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BARCLAYS will become the first major UK bank to report third-quarter results on Friday, amid growing concern about the impact of the coronavirus crisis on the economy.

In July the lender revealed a 66pc drop in first-half profits, after it set aside £3.7bn to cover loans that might go bad because of the pandemic.

The bank has also been providing mortgage relief to households and record-low interest rates are putting further pressure on its finances.

But expectations from investors seem low, with shares trading at levels last seen during the financial crisis in 2009.

One bright spot of Barclays’ second-quarter results was the investment banking arm, which put in a strong performance and cushioned the Covid-19 blow. Investors will again hope for some good news from the division, which is expected to deliver profits of £634m.

But more attention will be given to how much the bank has set aside for bad loans – an indicator for how it thinks the economy is faring.

Russ Mould, at AJ Bell, said analysts predict a provision of about £1bn. ‘To accentuate the positive, that would at least be a big drop from the numbers in the first and second quarters,’ he adds.

© Daily Mail

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Tuesday, October 27, 2020