Greece's NBG records 344 million euro profit in H1

National Bank of Greece says first half profit reaches 344 million euros

ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- National Bank of Greece, the country's largest lender, says a strong performance by its Turkish subsidiary helped boost first-half profits to 344 million euros ($455 million), after deep losses a year ago.

NBG said Thursday its Turkish Finansbank unit recorded a 30 percent increase in first-half profits to 332 million euros.

The bank also said its overall provisions for bad loans fell from 1.2 billion euros a year ago to 853 million in January-June.

In the first half of 2012, NBG recorded losses of 1.9 billion euros.

In June, the bank succeeded in raising enough capital to avoid being nationalized under a 50 billion euro rescue fund for Greek lenders set up with international bailout cash.

Greece is in the midst of an acute debt crisis.