Royal Bank of Canada said yesterday it will see pretax writedowns of about $855 million in the second quarter, its largest charge since the credit crisis began last summer.

The bank, Canada’s biggest, said that after taxes and compensation adjustments, the charge to earnings is about $420 million. It will report its results on May 29.

Shares of Royal were up $1.15, or 2.4 pecent, at $49.77 at midday on the Toronto Stock Exchange on investor relief that the size of the loss was not larger.


Recently, Citigroup analyst Shannon Cowherd suggested that Royal could take writedowns of about $5 billion, but she later cut her estimate in half after the bank disputed that view.

Five of Canada’s six major banks have been forced to take writedowns amid troubles in financial and credit markets.

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