China Everbright soars back with $135m profit

PUBLISHED : Friday, 15 August, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 15 August, 2003, 12:00am

The firm's mainland and Hong Kong operations performed unevenly

Red chip China Everbright returned to the black with a $135 million interim net profit after a loss of $205.2 million a year earlier.

The financial group's turnover in the first six months soared 156 per cent year on year to $100.58 million. However, its mainland and Hong Kong operations turned in uneven performances, with its 21.39 per cent-owned mainland lender Everbright Bank contributing 87.24 million profit.

The bank, which operates 359 branches and offices across China, recorded a 34.2 per cent year-on- year rise in operating income to $3.25 billion, trimming its operating cost to operating income ratio from 55 per cent to 42 per cent.

Its profit after tax was $407 million.

Its total deposits and customer loans rose 18.3 per cent and 25.6 per cent respectively to $298.4 billion and $232 billion, as total assets expanded 21.39 per cent from a year earlier to $347.6 billion.

The bank's non-performing loan (NPL) ratio stood at 10.2 per cent at the end of June, with a $1.27 billion increase in provisions boosting its provisioning rate for NPLs to 46 per cent. China Everbright's bottom-line was further helped by its Hong Kong brokerage business, which recorded unspecified growth in securities, foreign exchange and corporate finance activities.

The brokerage arm contributed $36.35 million profit, making it the second-largest source of interim profit for China Everbright.

By contrast, International Bank of Asia (IBA) - Hong Kong's smallest listed lender - kicked off this year's bank reporting season with a 45.6 per cent plunge in after-tax profit to $52.39 million, contributing merely $10.48 million profit to its 20 per cent shareholder China Everbright.

With the fragility in mainland stock markets continuing, China Everbright's 49 per cent-owned Everbright Securities booked an after-tax profit of $1.92 million, with a $940,000 contribution to China Everbright.

factoring in

The firm's bottom-line was helped by its Hong Kong brokerage, which recorded growth in securities, foreign exchange and corporate finance