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French investment bank Natixis reported 57 per cent profit increase in the fourth quarter as trading activity surges at its investment banking business.

“The fourth quarter was very strong for capital market activity,” chief executive Laurent Mignon told the FT. “On the back of the election of Donald Trump, there has been a lot of optimism in the US business community.”

Net income rose to €496m from €316m in the same period last year, beating estimates, with net revenue up 12 per cent to €2.52bn. The bank said it would pay a cash dividend of €0.35 per share for 2016, stable compared with 2015.

Mr Mignon said that the bank continued to gain market share in investment banking over the year, with net revenue in its global markets division rising 28 per cent for the quarter.

“The fact that some big European banks with significant investment banks have been undergoing a restructuring has allowed us to gain market share with some of their clients,” said Mr Mignon.

The bank also announced the appointment of former Goldman Sachs banker Jean Raby as head of asset management, private banking and private equity business lines, with a place on the senior management committee.

Natixis, which is majority-owned by French retail banking group BPCE, last year agreed to buy a majority stake in advisory boutique Peter J Solomon in a bid to find growth outside Europe and tap into the booming US mergers and acquisitions market.

For the asset management business, Mr Mignon said there has been a rise in assets under management but that the “year was a little bit challenge because of competition of passive asset management.”

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