PARIS Feb 15 Credit Agricole,
France's biggest retail bank, beat forecasts with a smaller than
expected earnings drop in the fourth quarter after it booked a
writedown on the value of its French retail unit, blaming a low
interest rate environment.
Credit Agricole's fourth-quarter net income fell to 291
million euros ($307.82 million) versus 882 million a year ago,
although the result beat the average of analyst estimates of 254
million in a Reuters poll.
Revenues rose 7 percent to 4.58 billion euros, above the
poll average of 4.36 billion, helped by stronger results in its
asset management and investment banking divisions.
"Only retail banking...did not contribute to revenue growth
due to the low interest rate environment," the bank said in a
($1 = 0.9454 euros)
(Reporting by Maya Nikolaeva and Julien Ponthus; Editing by