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Bank ABC Announces US$151 Million Nine-Month 2017 Net Profit Attributable to the Shareholders of the Parent

Manama, Bahrain: Bank ABC (Arab Banking Corporation B.S.C.) today announced that its consolidated net profit, attributable to the shareholders of the parent, for the first nine months of 2017 was US$151 million. This compared with a net profit of US$150 million reported for the same period last year, and benefited from robust performance in core businesses notwithstanding conditions that continue to be challenging in many markets. Net profit for the third quarter was US$49 million, similar to the level reported for the same period last year.

Total operating income was US$653 million, marginally lower than the US$658 million reported in the first nine months last year. Whilst growth in revenues in Brasil benefited from FX strengthening, our Wholesale and Retail businesses are showing traction from the strategic initiatives resulting in sustained performances even after absorbing some significant FX depreciation. Operating expenses at US$339 million were $14 million higher than last year, including continuing investment into the Group’s strategy, digital platform and infrastructure as well as some currency translation impact. Net impairment provisions for the nine-month period ended 30 September 2017 at US$67 million compared with the previous year’s US$60 million reflecting the increased level of charge from Banco ABC Brasil (BAB) net of recoveries.  BAB’s impairment charge continues to be impacted by the effects of recent recession in Brazil but is lower than Brazilian peer banks, and BAB’s overall profitability has remained strong. Impairment levels in MENA and in the International Wholesale Bank remained at relatively low levels and comparable to previous year.

The Group ratio of non-performing loans to gross loans of 3.9% marginally improved from  2016 year-end levels of 4.1% and normalises to 2.9%, when legacy loans are adjusted for. The tax charge was at US$53 million, compared to the charge of US$87 million for the same period last year, the variance largely arising from the tax treatment of currency hedges in BAB. Bank ABC Group’s total assets stood at US$29.5 billion at the end of first nine months of 2017, comparable to US$30.1 billion at the 2016 year-end. The Bank continues to prioritise asset quality and return, whilst maintaining liquidity and capital strength.

Deposits at the end of the period were US$21.5 billion higher than the US$20.2 billion at 2016 year-end. The Group’s liquidity position continues to be at comfortable levels with the liquid assets to deposits ratio at 61%, lower than the 68% at the year-end 2016 reflecting the increase in the deposits.

Shareholders’ equity at 30 September 2017 stood at US$3,927 million after the distribution of 3% dividend to the shareholders earlier in the year. Group consolidated total capital adequacy ratio (CAR) remained strong at 19.3%, comprising predominantly Tier 1 at 18.2%.

Bank ABC's Group Chairman, Mr. Saddek Omar El Kaber, commented that “The results continue to show resilience as our diversified group businesses deal with external economic challenges. There are positive signals that Brazil is finally emerging from recession which, combined with underlying growth in many of our other core businesses, bodes well for future profitability. Our key balance sheet and risk metrics continue to be prioritised and benchmark well against regional and international standards.”

Bank ABC is a leading player in the region’s banking industry and provides innovative wholesale financial products and services that include corporate banking, trade finance, project and structured finance, syndications, treasury products and Islamic banking. It also provides retail banking services through its network of retail banks in Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria.

Saddek Omar El Kaber_Chairman of Bank ABC 


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