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KARACHI: Habib Bank Ltd (HBL) on Thursday declared a consolidated profit of Rs9.08 billion for Jan-March, registering little change in the bottom line on a year-on-year basis.

In a stock filing, the bank also declared a dividend of Rs3.50 per share. The result was in line with market expectations. Net markup income after provisions amounted to Rs19.8bn, up by just 0.45 per cent from a year ago.

However, non-markup income increased 26pc to Rs8.3bn. The increase was on the back of the gain on sale of securities, which jumped 2.5 times on an annual basis.

A press release said HBL’s balance sheet grew 2pc from the preceding quarter to reach Rs2.6 trillion. Lending activity remained robust, with average domestic loans increasing 24pc over the first quarter of the last year, it added.

According to Topline Securities, key risks to HBL’s earnings include a further cut in the benchmark interest rate, lower-than-expected growth in advances and overall deterioration in macro-economic indicators.

On an unconsolidated basis, earnings of HBL for Jan-March dropped 4.7pc year-on-year to Rs8.11bn.

The stock price of HBL increased 3.3pc to close at Rs268.92 per share.

Published in Dawn, April 21st, 2017