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Best bank
Santander Chile Best debt house

Best equities house

The only problem with Santander Chile is that it?s too big. Chile is a mature market, and in the wake of merging its two banks in the country, Santander has found it very difficult to get any further growth. Loan activity declined 7.5% in 2003, with new corporate loans plunging 46%; Santander is looking to rich individuals to make up some of the difference.

But Santander Chile remains the best bank in the country. Return on equity is still high, at 21.3%, and total profits, at $300 million, dwarf the $189 million that was made by chief rival Banco de Chile.

The award for best debt house is a close race between the co-leads of the only sovereign bond of the year, a four-year floater from JPMorgan and Citigroup that met with mixed fortunes. JPMorgan wins the award, because it was also a co-lead on the $500 million 10-year bond from copper company Codelco, and a $300 million 10-year bond from wood-pulp maker Arauco.

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