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Commerzbank outlook for 2012 grim despite earnings rise in second quarter

FRANKFURT, Germany -- Germany's Commerzbank posted a near six fold increase in second-quarter earnings, but warned that profits would fall in the second half of the year because of a rough economy and the European debt crisis

The bank said Thursday that earnings for the period bounced back to 300 million euros (US$370 million) from only 53 million euros a year ago when the bank took deep losses on Greek bonds.

Other key numbers fell, however. Income from trading and commissions declined, while bad loans rose.

The company said the difficult economy meant profit for the second half would come up short of the first half's — Germany, Europe's biggest economy, is coming off the boil and some economists are even predicting that it may fall back into recession, officially defined as two straight quarters of falling output.

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