Santander UK profits rose 30% to £1.54bn last year

Santander UK posted a 30% rise in annual pre-tax profits to £1.54bn for the year to December 31 2009 and increased its gross mortgage market share.

Santander’s UK banking arm, which recently completed the re-branding of Abbey and Bradford & Bingley branches, increased its gross lending share of the mortgage market to 18.6%, up from 13.9% in 2008. But gross mortgage lending went down from £35.2bn in 2008 to £26.4bn last year.

Net lending for the Spanish giant’s UK businesses, which also include Alliance & Leicester, rose to £7.6bn in 2009 from £6.1bn in 2008.

The average LTV of Santander’s mortgage book stands at 52% for existing stock and 64% for new business.

The proportion of mortgages in arrears of three months or more is 1.37% compared with the industry average of 2.4%. Repossessions fell from 969 in 2008 to 820 last year.

António Horta-Osório, chief executive of Santander UK, says: “These results show our business model and strategy are allowing us to increase profits, control costs and lend in a prudent manner.”