NBB registers 1.3pc increase in net profit

MANAMA: National Bank of Bahrain (NBB) has reported a 1.3 per cent increase in net profit at BD15.6 million ($41.4m) for the quarter ended March 2021, compared with BD15.4m ($40.8m) in the same period of 2020.

The increase is predominantly due to lower provisioning levels in 2021, as 2020 included precautionary provisioning requirements attributable to the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic.

Furthermore, 2021 results underscore the strong group fundamentals given the significant market changes that have occurred subsequent to the first quarter of the previous year.

Basic and diluted earnings per share at 8 fils for the first quarter remained at the same level of the same period of 2020.

Total comprehensive income for the quarter increased to BD16.1m compared with a comprehensive loss of BD39.3m in the same period of 2020.

The increase is predominantly attributable to the mark-to-market movements of the Bahrain sovereign bond portfolio.

Operating income decreased by 3.5pc in the quarter to BD38.9m compared with BD40.3m in the prior year period, largely impacted by lower fees and margins following the Covid-19 pandemic, which did not impact the revenues of the first quarter of 2020.

The group’s total equity decreased by 3.6pc to BD500.8m following the distribution of the 2020 cash dividends, compared with BD519.7m recorded as of end-December 2020.

Total assets increased by 0.6pc to BD4,389.1m compared with BD4,361.4m recorded on December 31, 2020.

The increase was attributable to higher placements and a continued strong demand for NBB loan products.

Commenting on the results, NBB chairman Farouk Almoayyed said: “We are very pleased with our overall financial results for the first quarter of the year, which demonstrate positive growth despite the effects of the pandemic on the global economic environment.

“Our net profits have shown an increase from the same period in 2020, and the group’s balance sheet remains strong by showing a growth since December 2020, supported by an increased demand for NBB loans throughout the quarter.

“The acquisition of majority stake in Bahrain Islamic Bank (BisB) in 2020 continues to be a strategic move, with the integration serving to highlight a strong liquid balance sheet to protect both banks. We have also witnessed a strong year in terms of deals and partnerships, namely our ongoing collaboration with the Housing Ministry and Eskan Bank to promote accessible housing solutions to the kingdom’s population, alongside taking part in a number of national initiatives throughout the quarter.

“NBB remains committed to supporting its individual and business customers during these times, in line with the Central Bank of Bahrain and the loan deferral initiatives set to last into the second half of 2021.”

NBB chief executive Jean-Christophe Durand said: “Financial performance during the first quarter of the year has been positive, with a 52.9pc increase in net profit to BD15.6m from BD10.2m in the last quarter of 2020, despite the unstable market conditions witnessed not only across the kingdom, but also the world, which have impacted all banks and companies directly or indirectly.

“These results come despite the drop in market rates which have had a significant impact on profit growth and margins. Our strong positioning in the market enabled us to expand our product and services portfolio by strengthening our partnerships, both locally and regionally, as we continue to form solid relationships to enhance our performance.”

 

Source: https://www.gdnonline.com/Details/944200/NBB-registers-13pc-increase-in-net-profit

 

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