NatWest Bancorp recovers of spacey

NatWest Bancorp, the US retail arm of National Westminster Bank, yesterday showed how far it has recovered from the doldrums of the late 1980s by announcing pre-tax profits for 1994 of $326.7m, up from $252.5m the previous year, writes John Willco ck.

John Tugwell, the main board director who was sent to rescue the ailing subsidiary, said the results were driven by growth in net interest income and control over operating expenses.

"This was indeed a satisfying year as several major initiatives came together. The acquisition of Citizens First Bancorp and the opening of our new servicing facility in Scranton, Pennsylvania, provided improved efficiency and expanded revenue streams that will drive future earnings growth," said Mr Tugwell.

The Bancorp chairman and chief executive said that in 1995 the bank would focus on improving its productivity and efficiency, enhancing its reputation for superior customer service and providing a strong return on investment to its parent.

The acquisition of Central Jersey Bancorp has been approved and will be completed shortly.