Barclays has revealed pre tax profits of £4,542 million for the first nine months of the year, despite being down almost a fifth on the figure it reported in 2008.
The bank said charges made relating to bad debts had increased by 65% to £6,214 million as a result of the deterioration of the economy and movements in foreign exchange.
However, before the deduction of exceptional items, including bad debts, profits before tax amounted to £4,413 million, more than double that seen a year earlier.
"This performance shows the resilience and diversification of our portfolio of businesses," said John Varley, Barclays' Chief Executive.
Meanwhile, HSBC said its profits for the same period were ahead of a year ago, although it declined to reveal an actual figure.
Profits for the third quarter itself were said to be significantly ahead of those posted in Q3 2008. "Thanks to a highly diversified business model, a clear and unchanged strategy and a focus on banking fundamentals, HSBC continues to deliver broadly based profits at this pivotal stage of the business cycle," said Group Chief Executive, Michael Geoghegan. "At a time when economic conditions have remained challenging and public trust in banks has been seriously compromised, we are attracting new customers in our target segments. We have maintained our strong deposit base and we continue to lend to and support customers through difficult times."
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