By Our Special Correspondent
LAHORE: Habib Bank Limited (HBL) on Thursday declared a consolidated profit after tax of Rs 8.1 billion, with earnings per share for H1 18 at Rs 5.42. Along with the results, the Board declared a dividend of Rs 1.00 per share (10 pc), bringing the total dividend for the six months of 2018 to Rs 2.00 per share. Profit before tax for the six months of 2018 was Rs 14.1 billion. The consolidated Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) as at June 30, 2018 crossed the 17 pc mark, rising to 17.1 pc and the Tier 1 CAR rose by 79 bps over December to 12.8 pc. During the quarter, the Bank’s credit ratings were also re-affirmed by JCR-VIS at AAA/A-1+ for long term and short term respectively with the rating of its subordinated debt at AA+.
HBL’s core domestic business continues on a strong trajectory, with steady growth in key drivers. Total domestic deposits increased by 8 pc to nearly Rs 1.9 trillion and our leading market share increased further, to 14.4 pc. In the first six months of 2018 alone, the Bank added Rs 119 billion in domestic CASA deposits, and the ratio of current accounts rose to 36.3 pc in June 2018.Even more impressively, HBL’s average current accounts increased by around Rs 80 billion, a growth of 15 pc compared to the first half of 2017.
With a renewed focus on robust lending growth, HBL’s domestic loan book increased by Rs 91 billion (13 pc) during the first six months with strong contributions from Islamic Financing, Consumer Lending and Corporate loans; the Bank’s steadily rising ADR improved to 47pc, contributing to higher domestic interest income. However, with a reduction in the international balance sheet compared to 2017 levels, total net interest income declined by 2.7pc to Rs 40.3 billion. In the first half of 2018, HBL continued its strong recovery performance, recording a reversal of Rs 240 million against loans, compared to a provision of Rs 564 million in H1 2017.The infection ratio further reduced to 7.6 pc while the coverage ratio strengthened to 91.7pc.
HBL is fully committed to the financial inclusion of the country’s population and to expanding the digital retail payments infrastructure. In July, the Bank launched its proprietary and unique product, Konnect by HBL. This has received excellent market acceptance and in a few weeks, over half a million customers have been serviced. 25 pc of Konnect accountholders are women.Within the first month, nearly 700,000 transactions with a value of over Rs 4.5 billion have taken place on the Konnect platform. HBL continues to widen its customer franchise and footprint; during 2018, the Bank has added over 600,000 customers, who it reaches through over 1,700 branches, 2,093 ATMs, 30,000 retail outlets and nearly 19,000 POS machines across Pakistan and our digital channels of HBL Mobile and Internet Banking.
HBL is conscious of its responsibility towards the development of Pakistan and is contributing Rs 100 million towards the construction of the Diamer Bhasha and Mohmand Dams. The Bank has embarked on a global business and compliance transformation project and will continue to invest in this area, in state of the art technology, and in building on its market leading brand presence. As part of this project, we intend to transform the way we deal with our valued customers and provide them exceptional service.