Metrobank H1 profit up 33% to P15.6B

METROPOLITAN Bank and Trust Co. (Metrobank) booked a 33-percent increase in net profit to P15.6 billion in the first half of 2022, on the back of the company’s better performance across its portfolio.

It registered a record increase in earnings during the second quarter, with a 95-percent increase amounting to P7.6 billion. Metrobank attributed the higher net income to faster loan expansion, improving interest margin, robust fee income growth, stable operating costs and lower provisions amid healthier asset quality.

“The continued improvement in the bank’s performance cements our strategy as we enable various customers and businesses as economic activities accelerate. This also validates the recent recognitions we received from prestigious publications, naming us the country’s best bank,” Metrobank President Fabian Dee said.

“Our focus on serving our client needs while actively managing risks and promoting efficiencies has driven our solid operating results and will continue to do so in the medium term as the economy expands,” he added.

During the January-June period, Metrobank’s gross loans improved by 9 percent to P1.3 trillion year on year, led by a 12-percent growth in corporate and commercial lending and 16-percent increase in gross credit card receivables.

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Asset quality improved with nonperforming loans (NPLs) declining by 7 percent. The ratio of NPLs to total loans stood at 1.9 percent in the first six months of 2022, down from the 2.3 percent a year ago and significantly below the industry’s 3.9-percent benchmark in May. This enabled the bank to trim down loan loss provisions by 46 percent in the first half. Metrobank’s NPL cover stood strong at 196 percent, providing more than sufficient buffer to protect the bank against market risks.

Total deposits increased by 13 percent to P2.1 trillion. Current account savings account (CASA) deposits were up by 10 percent to P1.5 trillion from a year ago, resulting in lower funding costs. Net interest margin recovered to 3.4 percent, leading to a net interest income increase by 6 percent to P39.8 billion. Non-interest income went up by 8 percent in the first half driven by an 18-percent jump in fees and other non-interest earnings.

Despite prevailing market volatility, Metrobank managed to post P3.4-billion profit in trading income from strong customer driven revenue flows. Its transaction volumes increased and operating expenses met targets set, staying flat at P29.4 billion, backed by ongoing efforts to improve operational efficiency, resulting in a 53.8-percent cost-to-income ratio, an improvement from the 57.2 percent posted in the same period last year. The recovery in the bank’s revenues alongside stable costs led to a 16-percent rise in pre-provisioning profit to P25.6 billion.

Metrobank is the country’s second-largest private universal bank with consolidated assets of P2.7 trillion and total equity of P303.4 billion. The bank’s balance sheet remains strong with capital adequacy ratio or CAR standing at 17.6 percent and common equity tier 1 at 16.8 percent, both well-above the central bank’s minimum requirement.

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