The Parliamentary Supervisory Council has today confirmed the Bank of Finland’s financial statements and has, upon proposal by the Bank’s Board, decided that EUR 100 million will be transferred to the State.
The Bank of Finland’s audited profit for the financial year 2020 totals EUR 142 million. According to the Act on the Bank of Finland, half of the Bank's profit is to be transferred to the reserve fund and the remaining profit made available for use by the State. However, the Act allows for an exceptional profit distribution if justified by the Bank’s financial condition or the size of the reserve fund.
In its profit distribution proposal, the Bank of Finland Board assessed that the Bank’s capital adequacy is sufficient to cover the risks related to the undertaking of its tasks. On the basis of these considerations, and as in previous years, a share of the profit exceeding the statutory 50% will be made available to the State.
The Bank of Finland’s income consists primarily of interest income on banknotes and the Eurosystem’s monetary policy items, investment income on foreign reserves and other financial assets of the Bank as well as the Bank’s share in the ECB’s profit that is distributed to the euro area national central banks. In 2020, the Bank of Finland’s net interest income amounted to EUR 731 million (2019: EUR 755 million). The reduction in net interest income mainly resulted from costs from targeted monetary policy operations (TLTRO III) conducted to preserve favourable financing conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic. The interest rate on TLTROs is lower than the ECB’s deposit facility rate. Due to interest paid to banks in TLTROs, the Bank of Finland’s share in the Eurosystem’s monetary income fell to EUR 79 million (2019: EUR 206 million). This weakened the Bank’s financial result for 2020.
The Bank of Finland increased its general provision by EUR 100 million to prepare for risks arising from the conduct of central banking activities. ‘Monetary policy operations conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic have further enlarged the Bank of Finland’s balance sheet. The persistent low level of interest rates and, in particular, targeted refinancing operations with negative interest have lowered the Bank’s financial result. The profit outlook for 2021, too, is weak,’ stated Marja Nykänen, Deputy Governor of the Bank of Finland.
The Bank of Finland’s income covers its operating expenses and provisions. Operating expenses net of banknote production services and the pension fund contribution amounted to EUR 99 million in 2020 (2019: EUR 99 million).
The Bank of Finland’s financial statements, which also include the income and expenses of the Financial Supervisory Authority, have been published today, 26 March 2021 on the Bank’s website.
For further information, please contact: Marja Nykänen, Deputy Governor of the Bank of Finland, tel. +358 9 183 2007.