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Jan. 21, 2021, 6:37 a.m. EST

M&T Bank profit falls, but beats expectations

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By Dieter Holger

M&T Bank Corp.'s profit fell in the fourth quarter amid low-interest rates that hit the bank's income, but its earnings still came above Wall Street's expectations.

Buffalo, N.Y.-based M&T said Thursday that profit was $471.1 million, or $3.52 a share, in the fourth quarter. A year ago, profit was $493.1 million or $3.60 a share.

Analysts polled by FactSet expected $3.03 a share.

Taxable equivalent net interest income fell to $993.3 million from $1.01 billion in the previous year. Analysts expected net interest income of $950 million.

The bank set aside $75 million in the quarter for loan losses, up from $54 million a year ago. Last quarter, it set aside $150 million.

Net loan charge-offs totaled $97 million.

"Although the effects of the pandemic and the low interest rate environment impacted M&T's financial results in 2020, we were pleased with the growth experienced in the mortgage banking and trust businesses," Darren King, chief financial officer at M&T, said.

Write to Dieter Holger at dieter.holger@wsj.com; @dieterholger

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