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Saudi bank NCB's first-quarter profit up 10.5%, beats forecasts

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National Commercial Bank (NCB), Saudi Arabia's largest lender, on Wednesday reported a 10.5 per cent rise in first-quarter net profit, above analysts' forecasts as bad debt charges fell and fees rose.

[RIYADH] National Commercial Bank (NCB), Saudi Arabia's largest lender, on Wednesday reported a 10.5 per cent rise in first-quarter net profit, above analysts' forecasts as bad debt charges fell and fees rose.

The bank's net profit of 2.99 billion riyals (S$1.06 billion) in the three months to March 31, was up from 2.70 billion riyals in the same period of 2017, it said in a statement.

SICO Bahrain had forecast NCB would make a quarterly profit of 2.44 billion riyals and Arqaam Capital had estimated a net profit of 2.66 billion riyals.

Deposits at the bank, majority-owned by the state, dropped 1.5 per cent year on year to 309 billion riyals at the end of March, continuing a decline seen in the first quarter of 2017 and 2016.

Loans and advances at the end of March stood at 253 billion riyals, down 0.6 per cent on a year earlier.

REUTERS

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