SABB posts 90.6pc rise in Q2 net profit
Riyadh, July 12, 2011
The Saudi British Bank (SABB) posted a 90.6 per cent rise in its second quarter net profit, beating analysts' forecasts, the bank said in a bourse statement on Tuesday.
SABB, an affiliate of the HSBC Group, attributed the rise in profit to lower operational costs during the first half of the year. The firm made a net profit of SR852 million ($227 million) in the three months to end June, against SR447 million a year earlier.
Analysts surveyed by Reuters had expected the bank to make, on average, a net profit of SR708 million for the second quarter.
The top Saudi bank said its net profit for the first six months of 2011 surged 50.1 per cent to hit SR1.603 billion ($427.4 million) compared to SR1.06 billion last year.
Commenting on the results, SABB chairman Sheikh Khaled Olayan said the bank has achieved strong profit growth with its robust and diversified operating income streams, cost containment measures and ongoing drive to book quality business.
'SABB continues to take a prudent view of provisioning while remaining focused on improving customer service through investment in its infrastructure. We are committed to supporting our customers and seeking new opportunities for business growth,' he stated.
Four other Saudi banks posted quarterly profits that met or beat analyst estimates on Monday as Saudi lenders rebound a period of bad loan provisioning which have ate into their profits in 2009 and 2010.
Last year SABB and Riyad bank sharply raised their provisions for loan losses during the second quarter, continuing a clean-up of their loan portfolios after defaults by some local firms.
SABB had booked SR504 million in the second quarter last year for loan losses provisions. The bank's statement did not mention any provisions for the second-quarter of this year.
SABB's loans portfolio rose by 6.7 per cent to SR79.8 billion.-Reuters and TradeArabia News Service