Zenith Bank declares N53.180bn half-year profit

Zenith Bank Plc on Thursday released its results for the first half of 2015, which showed increases in the bank’s earnings and profits.

The results showed that the bank grew its gross earnings by 24.2 per cent from N184.435bn to N229.082bn, while its profit before tax rose by 24.8 per cent from N57.859bn to N72.201bn.

In the same vein, albeit by a smaller margin, the bank’s profit after tax appreciated by 12.1 per cent from N47.445bn to N53.180bn.

Also, the results showed that the bank’s non-performing loan ratio fell from 2.80 per cent to 1.44 per cent in the period under review.

In the period under review, customer deposits rose from N2.5tn to N2.6tn, the total assets stood at N3.8tn as against the N3.7tn reported in the corresponding period of 2014.

Following the release of the results, the bank’s Board of Directors proposed an interim dividend of 25 kobo per share.

Based on the result, the board of directors of the bank recommended an interim dividend of 25 kobo per share.

The qualifying date for the dividend, according to the bank, is August 21, 2015, while the register will close on August 24.

The payment date for the dividend is August 28.

Analysts at FBN Capital Research said relative to their forecast, Zenith Bank’s PBT surprised positively.

They added, “Consensus forecast for full year PBT and PAT stand at N124bn and N103bn. While we expect the PBT forecast to be increased, we also assume that the PAT forecast will see a cut given the scale of the tax charge in Q2 and the loss on the other comprehensive income line. We suspect that management will limit its commentary to the PBT and tax lines given the difficulties that the other comprehensive income line can present when providing guidance.”

In the first quarter of 2015, Zenith Bank Plc had declared a profit before tax of N33.128bn, 15 per cent higher than the N28.919bn profit before tax it posted for the corresponding period of 2014.

The first quarter results, which showed that the bank grew its gross earnings by 20 per cent from N94.324bn to N113.322bn, also showed that it recorded a 17 per cent growth in profit after tax year-on-year.

Specifically, the bank’s Q1 profit after tax rose from N23.677bn, which it declared for the first quarter of 2014, to N27.680bn in the review period, while its basic and diluted earnings per share rose from 75 kobo to 88 kobo.

The bank’s interest income for Q1 was N81bn, compared with the N71bn it posted in the similar period of 2014 translating to a 14 per cent increase, while its non-interest income appreciated by 39.5 per cent to N31.9bn from N22.9bn in 2014.

The operating income for the first quarter rose to N72bn, compared to N66bn in the same period of 2014, while operating expenses increased by 4.8 per cent to N39bn from N37.6bn.

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