FAB Q1 net profit rises 3% to Dh2.5 billion

Issac John /Abu Dhabi Filed on April 21, 2021

Total assets increased by two per cent to Dh941 billion year-to-date, and 13 per cent year-on-year. Customer deposits grew by five per cent year-to-date and 14 per cent year-on-year to Dh 568 billion

First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB), the UAE’s largest bank, reported on Wednesday a three per cent increase in net profit to Dh2.5 billion year-on-year for the first quarter in spite of “a slower than expected recovery in business activity.”

In a statement, the bank said revenue in the Q1 was four per cent lower year-on-year, “as lower net interest income due to the rate cuts in 2020, was partially offset by higher other income.”

Hana Al Rostamani, group chief executive officer of FAB, said as economic and business activity gather further momentum, “I am confident that we are well positioned to benefit from the opportunities that lie ahead for us and for our customers, and to continue to create sustainable value for all our stakeholders.”

Net impairment charges were 36 per cent lower year-on-year reflecting improving economic conditions and adequate provision buffers, while operating expenses reduced 3.0 per cent as the group maintained strong cost discipline, while continuing to invest in digital and strategic initiatives.

Annualised earnings per share (EPS) rose 7.0 per cent to Dh 0.88 compared to the first quarter of 2020 while the total operating income declined 4.0 per cent to Dh4.4 billion year-on-year, FAB said.

Impairment charges rose 48 per cent to Dh470 million sequentially, and down 36 per cent year-on-year, reflecting improving economic conditions, and adequate provision buffers as operating costs improved 3.0 per cent year-on-year to Dh1.3 billion, the statement said.

Total assets increased by two per cent to Dh941 billion year-to-date, and 13 per cent year-on-year. Customer deposits grew by five per cent year-to-date and 14 per cent year-on-year to Dh 568 billion, while loans and advances dropped two per cent year-to-date and one per cent year-on-year. Liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) at 141 per cent underlines strong liquidity position, the bank said.

Non-performing loan ratio was at four per cent and provision coverage at 96 per cent. Common Equity Tier 1 (CET1) remained at 13.7 per cent, well above regulatory requirements, FAB said.

Al Rostamani said the lender’s strong foundations and competitive strengths continue to support its ability to achieve a resilient performance in a challenging quarter characterised by a slower than expected recovery in business activity.

“In addition to our strong performance throughout the quarter, we have made significant progress on the delivery of our strategic priorities, which represent key milestones for both FAB and our industry,” said Al Rostamani.

She said the bank continued to lead the market in terms of green financing, and as a leading Green bond issuer regionally and globally, with FAB Green Bonds outstanding now exceeding $1 billion. “We are also in the process of finalising our acquisition of Bank Audi, our first international acquisition in a strategic and growing market.”

The bank said it “preserved strong liquidity and funding ratios during the period, a solid capital position, and resilient asset quality underpinned by a conservative risk profile. FAB continued to support customers through payment deferrals and the relief measures under the UAE Central Bank TESS programme, which has been further extended.”



Issac John

Editorial Director of Khaleej Times, is a well-connected Indian journalist and an economic and financial commentator. He has been in the UAE's mainstream journalism for 35 years, including 23 years with Khaleej Times. A post-graduate in English and graduate in economics, he has won over two dozen awards. Acclaimed for his authentic and insightful analysis of global and regional businesses and economic trends, he is respected for his astute understanding of the local business scene.

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