By Daniel Hunter

Santander has reported a 50% rise in profits for the third quarter after strong results from its UK business.

Santander reported profits of €1.6bn ($2bn; £1.25bn) in the three months to the end of September.

In the first nine months, profits are up 32% to €436bn.

The bank, the largest in the eurozone, was boosted by a strong performance from its UK business which reported a 26% rise in profits for the quarter to £1.01bn.

"Profit growth in 2014 helped consolidate the earnings recovery, thanks to improving revenues, falling costs and less need for write-downs," said Ana Botin, who took charge of Santander when her father Emilio died in September.

"The group's three core markets - Spain, Britain and Brazil - all posted profit growth in the January-September period, something that had not happened since 2009," the bank said.

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