Philippine National Bank, the fifth-largest lender in terms of assets, said Monday net income in 2019 increased slightly to P9.8 billion from P9.6 billion a year ago, driven mainly by the growth in net interest income, fees and commissions as well as trading gains.
“I am pleased with the improvements in our core income for 2019. Excluding the impact of non-recurring gains from the sale of foreclosed assets, the bank’s core net income grew by 57 percent year on year,” bank president and chief executive Wick Veloso said in a statement Monday.
Total consolidated resources of the bank, owned by tobacco and airline tycoon Lucio Tan, increased P158.6 billion or 16 percent from a year ago to P1.14 trillion.
Veloso said the financial results last year reflected the strength of PNB’s franchise in its wholesale and retail businesses.
“We expect to sustain the improvement in the quality of earnings of the bank as we enhance the Safe and Aggressive Growth strategy with added focus on profitability moving forward,” he said.
Net interest income expanded 20 percent to P32.4 billion on the back of improved earnings from loans to corporate, commercial and small and medium enterprises and other interest-earning assets.
Loan receivables registered double-digit growth to P657.9 billion as of end 2019, higher 12 percent from 2018. Deposit liabilities reached P826.0 billion, up 13 from the 2018 year-end.
Net service fees and commission income rose 20 percent from enhanced cross-selling efforts resulting in improvements in underwriting fees from capital market transactions as well as loan, deposit and credit card-related fees.
Net trading and foreign exchange gains jumped 97 percent due mainly to favorable opportunities in the market. Meanwhile, net gains from sale of acquired assets declined to P690 million from last year’s P5.9 billion.
Despite the reduction, total operating income registered a 6-percent improvement on account of solid growth in core revenues. Excluding net gains from sales of foreclosed asset sales, total operating income increased 22 percent year-on-year.
Operating expenses, excluding provisions for impairment and credit losses, rose 9 percent over the same period last year.