EastWest net income declines by 18 pct in H1

Posted at 08/08/14 11:49 AM

MANILA, Philippines - EastWest Bank on Friday reported its net income fell by 18 percent to P1 billion in the first semester of 2014.

In a statement, EastWest Bank attributed the drop in profit to lower trading gains and miscellaneous income, as well as higher income taxes.

Net interest income grew by 22.7 percent to P4.8 billion, driven by the growth in customer loans. Service charges, fees and commission rose by 26.2 percent to P1.5 billion mainly from transactional and servicing fees of consumer lending and branches.

However, the rest of operating income fell by 56.4 percent to P858.4 million, as a result of the decline in securities trading gains and due to one-off miscellaneous income posted last year.

Customer loans increased by 29.1 percent to P106.1 billion, with both corporate and consumer lending businesses growing by double-digits at 30.9 percent and 27.6 percent, respectively.

Total deposits stood at P126.1 billion, 24 percent higher than a year ago. EastWest also maintained its net interest margin (NIM) at 8.1 percent for the first six months of the year driven by sustained growth in high yield consumer loans and improvement in funding costs.

Total operating expenses, including provision for credit losses, stood at P5.9 billion, as the bank continued to feel the impact of the 178 new branches opened in 2012 and 2013.

"We are at the last phase of our branch expansion and we expect to feel its full impact on operating expenses this year. We are quite fortunate to have posted strong growth in our core banking businesses. We will continue to focus on consumer and middle market segments and optimize our expanded branch network, which are good sources of recurring income base,” said EastWest SVP & Chief Finance Officer Rene K. de Borja, Jr.