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Bergen, 15 July. The Sbanken group generated a profit before tax of NOK 210.6 million in the second quarter of 2020. Net interest income increased by NOK 24.9 million, while net and fee commission fell by NOK 8.0 million compared to the second quarter of 2019. Return on equity for the quarter was 9.8 per cent.
At quarter-end, total customer lending was NOK 84.4 billion, compared to NOK 79.9 billion at the end of the second quarter of 2019. Mortgages with an average loan-to-value of 52.9 per cent accounted for 94.8 of total customer lending.
· Gaining market share in mortgages – quarterly lending growth 1.6 per cent
· Fund savings at NOK 17.0bn – market share increased to 7.1 per cent
· Operating costs below guidance
· Conservative balance sheet – 94.8 per cent mortgages with low LTV
“This quarter, the bank has continued its growth momentum within mortgages and captured market share within fund savings. The financials we present for this quarter are however impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Net interest income was negatively affected by the timing of rate cuts, while net fee and commission income has fallen due to a drop in customers’ travel activity abroad. Our cost base is trending in the right direction, and we are starting to see the benefits of our cost initiatives, including the ongoing reduction in total workforce,” says Øyvind Thomassen, CEO of Sbanken.
Net interest income increased to NOK 384.0 (359.1) million, supported by 2.1 per cent quarterly growth in mortgage lending, but was negatively affected as rate cuts were effectuated earlier for lending than for deposits. The net interest margin for the quarter was 1.51 per cent, compared to 1.57 per cent in the second quarter of 2020.
Operating expenses amounted to NOK 170.0 million. The net cost of losses amounted to NOK 49.5 million, equivalent to a loan loss ratio of 0.24 per cent. Losses for unsecured credit were influenced by ECL model calibrations in light of updated macro assumptions.
At the end of the quarter, Sbanken had a CET1 capital ratio of 15.9 per cent, 3.4 percentage points above the regulatory CET1 requirement of 12.5 per cent. In July, the Norwegian Ministry of Finance ruled in favour of Sbanken in its application to exempt the parents company from the leverage ratio buffer requirement, a decision which improves the group’s capital flexibility going forward.
“The outlook for the Norwegian economy is showing clear signs of improvement with business activity picking up and unemployment levels falling. Going forward, we expects loss levels to decrease, and we will continue to capture market shares in mortgages and savings, in addition to bringing next level banking services to SMEs,” Thomassen concludes.
The full interim report can also be found on sbanken.no/ir/ir-english/.
Jesper M. Hatletveit, Head of IR, Sbanken ASA, +47 959 40 045
Henning Nordgulen, CFO, Sbanken ASA, +47 952 65 990
Kristian K. Fredheim, Head of Communications, Sbanken ASA, +47 924 47 407
This information is subject to the disclosure requirements pursuant to Section 5-12 the Norwegian Securities Trading Act