FCB records a quarterly profit of $311.5m

Friday, February 1, 2019 - 10:15

First Cit­i­zens Bank Ltd (FCB) record­ed a prof­itable first quar­ter for the three months end­ed 31 De­cem­ber 2018. FCB record­ed a prof­it be­fore tax of $311.5 mil­lion, a growth of 22.7 mil­lion or 7.9 per cent when com­pared to the cor­re­spond­ing pe­ri­od in 2017. The com­pa­ny’s prof­it af­ter tax was post­ed as $214.5 mil­lion, which ac­counts for a 5.5 per cent in­crease, as com­pared to De­cem­ber 2017.

In an in­ter­view with FCB Group CEO, Karen Dar­basie, she placed the num­bers doc­u­ment­ed in the first quar­ter­ly re­port in­to con­text. Dar­basie ex­plained that the rea­sons for the growth of the com­pa­ny were large­ly due to a well ex­e­cut­ed mar­ket­ing cam­paign. She said: We do a big Christ­mas cam­paign that starts in the mid­dle of Sep­tem­ber and fin­ished off at the end of De­cem­ber.”

Dar­basie said: “So we saw very sub­stan­tial growth in the loan book in the first quar­ter, loan-book growth was 1.7 bil­lion. That was very pos­i­tive for us be­cause when the bal­ance sheet grows in the first quar­ter, then the in­come falls in line af­ter that be­cause the in­ter­est in­come falls in line the next three quar­ters. So that was very pos­i­tive and is a good sign for us.”

The growth in cus­tomer loans re­sult­ed in net in­ter­est in­come of $14.3 mil­lion or 3.7 per cent. FCB’s earn­ings per share in­creased by 4 cents to 85 cents for the first quar­ter pe­ri­od and the board has de­clared an in­ter­im div­i­dend of 38 per or­di­nary share. Dar­basie not­ed that “our earn­ings per share and our div­i­dends per share are slight­ly be­hind the prof­it be­fore tax growth be­cause the tax rate has been go­ing up year-on-year.”

“In ad­di­tion, we are a fi­nan­cial ser­vices group, so when you look at the sub­sidiaries in the group, the bank it­self has an ef­fec­tive tax rate that’s at the high­est lev­el but the sub­sidiaries are ac­tu­al­ly not banks in and of them­selves.”

Dar­basie said: “So the more the bank con­tributes to the bot­tom line com­pared to the in­vest­ment ser­vices or as­set man­age­ment, the high­er the tax rate of the group and the bank has been per­form­ing par­tic­u­lar­ly well over the last cou­ple of years”.

- by Kyron Regis