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Erste Bank Investment Q1 profits rise 50% yr/yr

Erste Bank Investment Rt, the brokerage of Erste Bank Rt, had after-tax profit of Ft 827 million in the first quarter of 2006, up 50% from the same period a year earlier, CEO Robert Cselovszki announced on Thursday.

Cselovszki said Erste Bank Investment accounted for Ft 583.5 billion of trades on the Budapest Stock Exchange (BÉT) in the first quarter, or 19% of the total, compared to Ft 475 billion in Q1 2005. First-quarter turnover of government securities was Ft 1,349 billion, 45% more than in the same period a year earlier and giving the brokerage an 8.5% share of the market. Erste Bank Investment sold investment fund units worth Ft 199 billion in Q1 2006, up from Ft 176 billion in Q1 2005.
In the future, Erste Bank Investment plans to place an emphasis on online trading, Cselovszki said. Already, about 4,000 clients use the brokerage's NetBroker online trading system, set up in October 2005. Monthly turnover of the system has risen five-fold, reaching Ft 3 billion. The company aims to attract 15,000 clients to the service by the end of the year.