BEIRUT: In the midst of an extremely difficult operating environment, Byblos Bank reported a net profit of USD 60 million in the first half of 2019, and a fall of USD 7 million or 10.8 percent in comparison to the same time period of 2018.
These results can be explained by the steep decline in the net interest margin that is characteristic of the volatile market in Lebanon in the first half of 2019 and by the bank’s prolonged commitment to a conservative risk management strategy which is only reinforced by high liquidity ratios.
Bank Byblos holds accounts and short-term placements with investment-grade international banks that denote 15.57 percent of foreign currency customer deposits, a ratio well above internal and international criterion. The Bank’s Basel III solvency ratio at 18.4 percent compared to a regulatory ratio of 15 percent follows the same tracing.
The bank contained its operating costs by implementing a series of measures with the aim of optimizing productivity and reducing costs. The ratio of operating expenses to average assets improved to 0.96 percent at the end of June 2019 from 1.03 percent at the end of June 2018.
In a challenging, to say the least, economic environment, Byblos Bank has effectively managed its credit risk. This led to lower levels of loans to customers in the first half of 2019.
It maintained a contented provision coverage ratio of doubtful loans equal to 90.23 percent and an adequate (gross) non-performing loan ratio of 4.37 percent. This number slips to 1.43 percent after netting related provisions and interests reserved.
An-Nahar is not responsible for the comments that users post below. We kindly ask you to keep this space a clean and respectful forum for discussion.