Nedbank profit jumps 26%

2011-08-01 08:54

Johannesburg - Nedbank Group [JSE:NED], South Africa's fourth-largest bank reported a 26% rise in first-half profit on Monday, helped by a drop in bad debts and its push to boost revenue from fees.

Nedbank, majority owned by insurer Old Mutual [JSE:OML], was hit hard by bad debts after a 2009 recession took more than a million jobs out of the economy, squeezed corporate earnings and left many borrowers with ballooning household debts.

Like its rivals in Africa's biggest economy, Nedbank's recovery has been slow as costs continue to rise and loan growth remains weak. It has turned its focus to increasing the money it makes on transactions, to offset the slack demand for credit.

Nedbank, the first of South Africa's top four banks to report earnings this season, said non-interest revenue jumped 16% in the first half, adding that it expects double-digit growth to continue for the rest of the year.

"Nedbank was the one of the big four that was falling behind in terms of non-interest revenue," said Constantinos Kypreos, a credit analyst at ratings agency Moody's.

"It has been an important strategic initiative to grow that revenue stream, especially when you compare it with non-interest expenses."

Non-interest revenue, which includes revenue from fees and commissions, rose to R7.14bn from R6.16bn a year earlier.

Higher earnings

Credit growth has been in positive territory since May last year, but companies and individuals remain hesitant to borrow given the uncertain outlook.

Nedbank's diluted headline earnings per share were 600 cents in the six months to end-June, up from 475c a year earlier.

Nedbank had already said last week it expected earnings to increase by 23% to 28%.

Net interest income, a measure of earnings from lending, increased to R8.68bn from R8.08bn a year earlier.

HSBC, Europe's largest bank, last year ended talks to pay $8bn for Old Mutual's majority share in Nedbank. Old Mutual had been looking to sell the stake as part of a simplification strategy.

Old Mutual chief executive Julian Roberts has since said the insurer is focused on improving Nedbank's performance, but has declined to comment on whether it still intended to sell the stake.

Nedbank shares are up 8% so far this year, making it the best performer among the five stocks in Johannesburg's index of bank shares.

At 07:14 GMT on Monday, Nedbank shares were trading 1.8% stronger at R142.99. 

  • Gore - 2011-08-01 09:30

    Revenue picked from fees & commission. All u Nedbank customers u see those self service charges, internet user fee, sms notification fee etc amount to billions, thanks for the contributions, its appreciated!!

  • nonduplume - 2011-08-01 10:14

    I wonder how much of this came from dodgy lease deals that everybody knows are illegal except the banking fraternity and regulator?

  • G_Stocks - 2011-08-01 12:59

    Maybe now they can upgrade there technology infrastructure... ask HSBC why they walked away from the deal.

  • zule - 2011-08-01 13:09

    Of course their profits would be up...with all of their ludicrously high charges that they hit us with, what else could happen That is, until next year, when the Management would have found yet another way of sliding all that profit into their back pockets...and they will be back out ripping us off with their poor service...ATM's that hardly ever work...sloppy attitude and arrogance

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