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SAO PAULO, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Itaú Unibanco Holding SA posted on Tuesday fourth-quarter profit that beat expectations as a steeper-than-expected decline in defaults allowed Brazil's largest bank by market value to cut loan-loss provisions.
Recurring net income, or profit before one-time items, came in at a record 5.660 billion reais ($2.08 billion) in the quarter, compared with the 5.367 billion reais estimated in a Reuters poll. Profit rose 3.7 percent and 20.9 percent on a quarterly and annual bases, respectively.
$1 = 2.727 Brazilian reais Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal