SAO PAULO, April 26 (Reuters) - Profits at Banco Santander Brasil SA hit a record in the first quarter, the company reported on Wednesday, beating analysts' estimates after interest income surged and loan-loss provisions dropped the most in almost five years.
Recurring net income came in at 2.28 billion reais ($725 million), up 15 percent from the prior three months and well above the average consensus estimate of 1.632 billion reais compiled by Thomson Reuters.
Recurring return on equity totaled 15.9 percent for the first quarter, compared with a consensus estimate of 12.5 percent. Santander Brasil, which is controlled by Spain's Banco Santander, has a target for ROE of 15.6 percent by year end 2018. ($1 = 3.1470 reais)
Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal