French lender Societe Generale has reported net income of €2.38bn for the first half of 2016, a rise of 7.5% compared to €2.22bn a year ago.

The group's gross operating income was €4.75bn, a rise of 2.1% from €4.65bn during the same period of 2015. Operating expenses dropped 1.9% to €8.4bn from €8.56bn a year earlier.

Tier 1 ratio at the end of the first half of 2016 stood at 13.6%, up from 12.7% at the end of the first half of 2015.

The bank's French retail banking unit recorded net income of €731m for the first half of 2016, a rise of 3.8% from €704m in the prior year.

The division’s gross operating income dipped 7.4% year-on-year to €1.42bn from €1.53bn.

Net income at the bank's international retail banking & financial services unit surged 56.9% to €736m in the first half of 2016 from €469m the year earlier.

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Societe Generale CEO Frederic Oudea said: “Societe Generale posted sound results in the second quarter due to the good commercial and financial performance of all the Group’s businesses.

“Accordingly, the Group generated EUR 2,385 million of Group net income in the first six months of 2016, substantially higher than in H1 2015. These results, which have been achieved in a challenging environment, reflect the dynamism and strength of the Group’s well-balanced banking model, the quality of its portfolios and the commitment of its teams in serving its customers.”