ECONOMY

Investors keep an eye out for NBG figures

National Bank (NBG), the country’s largest lender, is scheduled to unveil 2009 profit figures today after the market closes. The bank is expected to report a 27.8 percent drop in full-year 2009 net profits to 1.12 billion euros on weak loan growth at home and in Southeast Europe, higher provisions and a one-off tax charge, according to a poll of experts conducted by analysts. A recession in Greece, with the economy contracting by 2.0 percent last year, impacted earnings as loan growth weakened and provisioning for impaired credit increased. The downturn in the Balkans, where Greek banks have expanded seeking growth, has also weighed. Greece’s debt crisis is poised to undermine already dwindling investment flows into Southeast Europe’s emerging economies, adding to recovery barriers.