UBS reports unexpected profits

<p>Profits at UBS have been unexpectedly high.</p>

The share price of Swiss bank UBS is up this morning on the back of its latest financial results, which have beaten the expectations of analysts.

In a statement, UBS revealed that in the first quarter of the year it recorded a 6.7 per cent increase in net income to 1.05 billion Swiss francs (£708 million). UBS also made waves when it announced a new group holding company is to be set up in the coming weeks and months.

Some analysts had predicted there would be a fall in income at the bank over the January-March period, but these estimations proved to be a long way wide of the mark.

UBS also stated that it is going to pay shareholders at least 0.25 Swiss francs per share, while it will also offer them a one-off dividend to swap shares to put into the group.

"Our focused business strategy and the quality and strength of our capital, means we are well positioned to execute these plans. As a result, our strategy, our business model and the way we serve our clients are not affected by these changes," said group chief executive officer Sergio Ermotti.

He added these plans have already been discussed by executives at the Swiss bank, who have contacted the relevant regulators to check the company would be allowed to do this.

Future plans

UBS chairman Axel A Weber also pointed out that the bank is "substantially enhancing the resolvability of UBS in response to evolving global regulatory requirements". He said: "We are confident this should lead to eligibility for a capital rebate benefiting the group as envisaged under the Swiss Too-Big-To-Fail requirements."

Following the release of the new financial results by the Swiss bank, the share price of UBS has risen in the early stages of trading today. By 08:27 BST, stocks in the firm were 1.67 per cent up compared to the start of the session.

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