Public Bank Q4 profit up 19% but warns of challenges ahead
Public Bank Bhd, the country’s third largest bank, reported an increase of 19% in its fourth quarter net profit which stood at RM1.49bil compared to the net profit of RM1.25bil for the same period a year earlier but warns of challenges ahead.
Founder and chairman Tan Sri Teh Hong Piow said expectations were for intense competition for market share.
“And the more stringent capital and liquidity requirement will continue to put pressure on net interest margin and return on equity,” Teh said in a statement.
The bank’s increase in its fourth quarter ended Dec 31, 2015 net profit was boosted largely by a net writeback of loan impairment allowances and higher net interest income, it said in the statement yesterday.
It also announced a second interim divided of 32 sen per share for shareholders, bringing total dividends for the year to 56 sen per share or a total payout of 42.7% of the bank’s net profit last year.
For the entire FY15, Public Bank’s net profit stood at RM5.06bil which translates to a net return on equity of 17.8%, against a net profit of RM4.52bil in FY14 while revenue stood at a higher RM19.18bil compared with RM16.86bil earlier.
Public Bank continued to be the most efficient banking group in the country with its low cost-to-income ratio of 30.5% compared to the banking industry’s average cost-to-income ratio of 45.5%. It also continued to maintain a healthy level of capital with its common equity Tier 1 capital ratio, Tier 1 capital ratio and total capital ratio standing at 10.9%, 12.0% and 15.5% respectively as at the end of 2015, after deducting the second interim dividend, it said.
In FY15, the bank grew its loans by 11.6%, aided by its retail banking segment and extension of credits to small and medium enterprises while total customer deposits saw a growth of 8.9%.
Its domestic customer deposit grew by 7.5%, higher than industry’s growth of 1.8%.
As at the end of 2015, the group’s impaired loan ratio was at 0.5%, significantly lower than the industry ratio of 1.6% while its loan loss coverage ratio of 120.8% as at the end of last year was also higher compared to the local banking industry’s ratio of 96.2%.
Teh said growing fee-based revenue remained a key strategic focus of the Public Bank group.
“Arising from the group’s initiative to drive growth of its non-interest income in order to sustain better return for its shareholders, the group’s non-interest income increased by 22.4% in 2015 as compared to 2014, mainly contributed by higher income from its unit trust business, foreign exchange related transactions and fee income from banking operations,” he said.
Shares of Public Bank finished yesterday higher at RM18.38, up 4 sen.
Public Bank’s 2015 earnings cross RM5bil mark
KUALA LUMPUR: Public Bank Bhd recorded a stellar set of results, with net profit surpassing RM5bil for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2015. It rewarded shareholders by declaring a second interim dividend of 32 sen per share, bringing the full-year dividend to 56 sen.
The total dividend paid and payable for 2015 amounted to RM2.16bil and represents a total payout of 42.7% of the group’s net profit for 2015.
Public Bank posted a net profit of RM5.06bil, up 12% from RM4.52bil it recorded a year ago, translating to a net return on equity of 17.8% for 2015. Revenue was 13.8% higher at RM19.18bil compared with RM16.86bil in 2014.
In its filing with Bursa Malaysia on Wednesday, the bank said it owed its improved earnings to higher net interest income, higher non-interest income and lower loan impairment allowances.
However, these were partially offset by higher operating expenses due to higher personnel costs.
Gross loans grew 11.6% to RM273.4bil driven by growth in property financing, financing of passenger vehicles and lending to SMEs.
Deposits from customers were 8.9% higher to RM301.2bil, which partly contributed to the higher net interest income during the year.
“The results reflected the consistent execution of the group’s organic growth strategy which continues to deliver favourable results to our customers and our shareholders,” said founder and chairman Tan Sri Teh Hong Piow in a statement.
He added that the bank’s robust funding position was mainly supported by its strong retail franchise and large domestic depositor base of over five million customers who continue to place their trust and confidence in the group in safeguarding their funds.
Public Bank’s impaired loan ratio improved to 0.5% as at end-December 2015.
For the fourth quarter, the bank posted a 19% year-on-year gain in net profit to RM1.49bil while revenue was 8.8% higher at RM4.93bil.
Moving forward, the group said it will leverage on its internal strength and capitalise on its customer service and service delivery to maintain its leading market share in the domestic retail segment, supported by steady demand for home mortgages, vehicle financing and SME lending.
By Wong Wei-Shen The Star/Asia News Network
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