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Access Bank records N72b profit in Q3

Access Bank Plc grew pre-tax profit by 19 per cent to N72 billion in the third quarter as the bank sustained a steady overall performance outlook in the first nine months of this year.

Key extracts of the nine-month report of Access Bank for the period ended September 30, 2016 released at the weekend showed that profit before tax rose by 19 per cent to N72 billion in third quarter 2016 as against N60.4 billion in comparable period of 2015. Also, net profit after tax rose by the same margin from N48.1 billion in third quarter 2015 to N57.1 billion in third quarter 2016. Gross earnings had risen from N257.6 billion to N274.5 billion. The growth in gross earnings was driven by 17per cent increase in interest income on the back of continued growth in the Bank’s core business. Operating income rose to N199.3 billion in third quarter 2016 as against N178.1 billion in corresponding period of 2015.

Access Bank also improved on the supporting balance sheet for its business. Customer deposits also grew by 25 per cent to N2.1 trillion by September 2016 as against N1.68 trillion recorded at the beginning of the year. The capital adequacy ratio (CAR) of the bank stood at 19 per cent as at September 2016, well above the regulatory minimum. The bank’s asset quality ratios remained well above the regulatory benchmark of 5.0 per cent as the percentage of Non-Performing Loans (NPL) to total gross loans stood at 2.1 per cent. The NPL coverage ratio also remained strong at 209.5 per cent.

Group managing director, Access Bank Plc, Herbert Wigwe said the performance of the bank in the first three quarters of this year had remained strong and consistent.

He said the results reflected the intrinsic stability of the bank as a business with the capacity to deliver sustainable returns, particularly during a period underlined by significant macro headwinds.

“Our capital and liquidity position remained adequately above regulatory levels, as we continued to implement a disciplined capital plan, ensuring sufficient levels of profit retention to support our growth. In addition to capital enhancement, the recently concluded $300 million senior unsecured debt issue allows us optimise and enhance our foreign currency funding capacity whilst strengthening our balance sheet,” Wigwe said.

He assured that the bank remained committed to its cost containment plan, as it strives to balance operational efficiency with earnings growth in a constrained environment.

“The bank will remain resilient in the achievement of its strategic imperatives; maximizing our strong market position and solid capital base, while leveraging digital innovation to improve service touch-points as we sharpen our retail play with emphasis on cheaper funding sources,” Wigwe assured.

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