May 4, 2016 / 1:42 PM / 2 years ago

Itaú sees signs that Brazil defaults have stopped worsening

SAO PAULO, May 4 (Reuters) - Itaú Unibanco Holding SA sees early signs that consumer and corporate defaults in Brazil might have stopped worsening, even as the economy continues to face serious headwinds, executives at the lender said on Wednesday.

Evidence that the economy is improving or defaults have stabilized will have to turn much stronger before Itaú stops raising loan-loss provisions, Chief Financial Officer Eduardo Vassimon said at a conference call to discuss first-quarter results.

Itaú missed first-quarter profit estimates on Tuesday, as rising defaults forced Brazil’s most profitable bank to raise loan-loss provisions more than initially expected.

Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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