Allied Irish Banks post profit but underlying loss

By the Associated Press | July 25, 2011 | 5:14 AM EDT

LONDON (AP) — Nationalized Allied Irish Banks on Monday reported a profit in the first half of the year but one-time gains masked continuing heavy losses.

The bank reported a net profit of euro2.2 billion in the six months to June 30, compared to a loss of euro1.7 billion a year earlier. However, the bank also reported an underlying loss of euro2.6 billion, up from euro2.1 billion a year earlier, largely because of high levels of bad debt.

Allied Irish took a charge of euro2.9 billion for bad loans, up from euro2.3 billion last year.

The bank's bottom line was boosted by selling its stakes in Bank Zachodni WBK of Poland and BZWBK AIB Asset Management to Spanish bank Santander for euro3.1 billion.