- Challenger bank Metro Bank said it expected to more than double its annual profit, even as profits 'softened' in the last quarter.

Underlying pre-tax profit for the year through December jumped to £50m, up from £21m on-year.

Loan volumes grew 48%, while deposit volumes grew 34%.

'2018 was another strong year of growth for Metro Bank as we continued to invest in both new stores and digital capabilities to win customers,' chief executive Craig Donaldson said.

'Metro Bank remains well positioned to support our growth strategy as we navigate an uncertain period for the UK.'

During the fourth quarter, the company opened stores in Bath, Crawley, Northampton, Putney, Ashford, and Piccadilly and neared completion of Moorgate, which opened in early January.

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