25/07/2018 08:25 AST

First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB), the largest bank in the UAE, has registered a net profit of Dh6.1 billion ($1.7 billion) for the first six months of 2018, up 10 per cent over last year boosted by higher foreign exchange and investment income.

Announcing the H1 results, FAB said its operating income for the period between January and June 2018 reached Dh9.8 billion, while its annualised earnings per share (EPS) stood at Dh1.08.

Cost-to-income ratio (ex-integration costs) at 25.7 per cent continues to improve on the back of cost discipline and synergy momentum, it added.

Commenting on the performance, Group CEO Abdulhamid Saeed said FAB had built on the positive momentum generated at the start of the year to deliver another strong set of results in the second quarter. "Our group net profit, which has grown consistently since Q2 2017, stood at Dh3.1 billion for the quarter, increasing by 19 per cent over the same period last year and leading to record half year profits above the Dh6 billion mark," remarked Saeed.

According to him, the group’s excellent performance was achieved on the back of healthy asset growth, and significantly lower risk and operating costs, as FAB continued to capitalise on solid asset quality and provision buffers, as well as substantial synergies realised from the merger.

"At the same time, the reaffirmation of our Aa3 and AA- ratings by Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s, and the assignment of the same ratings to our US subsidiary, are a clear testament to the solid fundamentals and financial strength of our bank," stated the top official.

"Just recently, FAB made a remarkable entry into The Banker’s Top 1000 World Banks 2018 ranking as the number one bank in the Middle East by capital strength, and the 81st worldwide, emphasising FAB’s significance in the global banking landscape," he added.

"In light of a strong first half and as we enter the final stretch of our integration journey, FAB is firmly on track to deliver another record performance for 2018," said Saeed.

"Despite persistent challenges, the economic outlook over the medium-term remains positive, underpinned by continuous reforms and initiatives to drive growth," he added.-


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