METROPOLITAN Bank and Trust Company (Metrobank) said earnings rose 6 percent in the first three months of the year backed by strong growth in loans and low-cost deposit generation, which led to better margins.
The country’s second largest bank in terms of assets reported unaudited consolidated net income of P5.6 billion for the first quarter of 2017 compared to P5.25 billion in the same period last year.
“Our first quarter results reflect our capability to consistently deliver quality earnings from our core business. We are moving as planned in terms of diversifying revenues through sustained growth in net interest income and higher contributions from fee-related initiatives” Metrobank President Fabian Dee told the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) on Friday.
Total revenues in the quarter amounted to P19.9 billion while operating expenses rose 6 percent to reach P11.1 billion.
As of end-March, Metrobank’s total deposits reached P1.4 trillion, up 16 percent year-on-year. Its low-cost current account, savings account (CASA) deposits expanded at a faster clip of 19 percent.
During the quarter, its loan portfolio climbed 26 percent to P1.1 trillion. The commercial segment led the growth, expanding 30 percent year-on-year, while consumer loans posted volume growth of 17 percent, led by auto loans as the fastest growing segment.
Net interest income increased 14 percent to P14.5 billion while net interest margins for the period improved to 3.7 percent, one of the highest rates among peer banks, it said.
Non-interest income expanded 18 percent to P5.4 billion, backed by growth in service fees and commissions and income from trust operations which totaled P3 billion. Metrobank also reported P1.1 billion in net trading and foreign exchange gains and P1.3 billion in miscellaneous income during the period.
Even with the strong loan growth for the period, Metrobank’s asset quality metrics remained healthy and better than industry average. Its non-performing loans (NPL) ratio was at 0.9 percent while NPL coverage was at 112 percent. For the first quarter, provisions for credit and impairment losses stood at P1.1 billion.
The bank ended the quarter with consolidated assets of P1.9 trillion and equity at P200 billion. Basel III total capital adequacy ratio (CAR) was well above the regulatory limit at 15.6 percent with Common Equity Tier 1 (CET1) ratio at 12.8 percent.