• Fitch affirms Security Bank’s ‘BB’ rating


    Fitch Ratings recently affirmed Security Bank Corp.’s (SBC) long-term issuer default ratings (IDRs) at “double B” (BB) and its viability ratings (VR) at “BB” with a stable outlook.

    “The VR and IDRs as well as the National Rating of Security Bank reflects its strong core capitalization, improving loan loss reserves, as well as its sound funding, liquidity and domestic franchise,” Fitch Ratings said in a press statement.

    The ratings agency added that the stable outlook on Security Bank reflects Fitch Rating’s expectation that the bank will largely maintain its steady credit profile over the near to medium term, underpinned by a buoyant domestic economy, manageable corporate leverage and low interest rates.

    “Further diversity and stability in funding, loans and revenue bases arising from disciplined expansion and a more established franchise, together with continued strong core capitalization, sustained risk-adjusted profitability and improvements in asset quality, would be rating-positive for Security Bank,” Fitch Ratings added.

    Security Bank’s first-half financial results showed that its business volumes continued to grow, paced by total deposits, which increased by 37 percent year-on-year to P179 billion.

    Low-cost deposits also increased by 37 percent. Loans grew by 21 percent to P133 billion from year-ago level.

    Security Bank said that loans went to power, utilities, infrastructure, wholesale and retail trade, food and agriculture, consumer goods and other key sectors of the economy. The bank’s total assets reached P294 billion, up by 25 percent year-on-year.

    Since last year, the bank also said that it has been undergoing an expansion program both from an organic and acquisition perspective.

    Eight more Security Bank branches were opened during the second quarter of 2013. In 2012, Security Bank made significant investments to expand its branch network, strengthen core businesses and develop new businesses.

    The Security Bank group’s network increased by 82 branches to a total of 218 branches as of June 30, 2013, from 136 branches at the beginning of 2012. The universal bank has 180 branches and thrift bank subsidiary Security Bank Savings has 38 branches.

    Furthermore, Security Bank’s capital further increased to P38 billion, up by 9 percent year-on-year. Its book value per share is at P75.82 after the P1 per share dividend paid in June 2013, up from P73.37 in December 2012.

    Mayvelin U. Caraballo


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