Qatar National Bank, the largest lender, reports 8.0 billion net profit…

QNB, the country’s largest lender, has reported a 13% surge year-on-year in net profit to QR8bn in the first nine months of this year, supported by core earnings.

Net interest earnings grew more than 6% to QR9.09bn and net fee and commission income by 7% to QR1.55bn.

Of the QR8bn net profit, corporate banking contributed more than 70% or QR5.61bn, followed by international banking at about 27% or QR2.12bn; asset and wealth management at 4% or QR322.88mn and consumer banking less than 1% or QR62.71mn, according to its financial statement.

The group’s prudent cost control policy and strong revenue generating capability allowed it to maintain an efficiency ratio (cost-to-income ratio) of 20.9%, which is considered one of the best ratios among financial institutions in the region, a bank spokesman said.

Total assets grew about 9% to QR475bn, the highest ever achieved by the group. This was the result of a strong 8% growth in loans and advances to QR329bn.

The bank was able to maintain the ratio of non-performing loans to gross loans at 1.6%, a level considered one of the lowest amongst banks in the Middle East and Africa, reflecting the high quality of the group’s loan book and the effective management of credit risk.

The conservative policy in regard to provisioning continued with the coverage ratio reaching 124% in September 2014.

At the same time, QNB increased customer funding by more than 6% to QR352bn, leading the group’s loan-to-deposit ratio reach 93%.

Total equity increased 10% to QR56bn and earnings-per-share stood at QR11.4 compared to QR10.2 in the previous-year period.

The bank’s capital adequacy ratio stood at 15% as on September 30, 2014, higher than the regulatory minimum requirements of the Qatar Central Bank.

QNB – which recently acquired a 23.5% stake (both ordinary and QNB convertible preference shares) in Ecobank Transnational Incorporated, the leading pan-African bank – is keen to maintain a strong capitalisation in order to support its future strategic plans, the spokesman said.

Indicating strong asset quality, the bank’s net impairment losses on investment securities plunged 61% and those on loans and advances to customers by 42%. Source: Gulf Times