November 1, 2010
Against these rough seas, Santanders local unit has been swimming upstream.
Assets increased to $8.8 billion in the first quarter of 2010 from $8.1 billion a year earlier. In the same period, the bank grew its return on assets (ROA) to 1.27% from zero, and its return on equity (ROE) to 14.07% from -0.02%.
However, the Spanish bank, like most large institutions in the system, is underperforming. Average ROA at Puerto Rican banks is 2.86% and average ROE is 29.43%, according to US-based business intelligence firm SNL Financial.
Santander is the third largest bank in Puerto Rico in terms of assets, trailing behind locally owned Banco Popular and Canadas Scotiabank, according t
Puerto Rico has been suffering a recession for more than four years. Several banks have collapsed, unemployment has soared and bankruptcies have increased.