Malaysia’s Maybank posts highest-ever first-quarter profit

Malaysian banks with presence in the neighboring Southeast Asia countries, such as Maybank, expect stronger demand for corporate and consumer loans as economies improve. (Reuters)
Updated 28 May 2018
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Malaysia’s Maybank posts highest-ever first-quarter profit

KUALA LUMPUR: Malayan Banking (Maybank), Malaysia’s largest lender, posted its highest ever first-quarter profit, helped by a drop in expenses and continued decline in impairment losses.
Maybank’s net profit for the quarter was 1.9 billion ringgits ($477.39 million), up 10 percent from 1.7 billion ringgits a year ago. It beat an average estimate of 1.85 billion ringgits from two analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters.
Revenue was 2 percent higher at 11.5 billion ringgits.
The results were supported by a better cost-to-income ratio of 47.6 percent, versus 50.1 percent a year ago, as fee-based and fund-based income growth outpaced rise in overhead expenses, the bank said in a statement on Monday.
Net impairment losses for the quarter ended March fell 7.7 percent, while gross impaired loans ratio improved to 2.37 percent from 2.40 percent, it added.
Maybank’s Malaysian operations recorded a strong 6.7 percent increase in loans, while its Singapore and Indonesia operations saw increases of 5.5 percent and 2.9 percent, respectively.
On the group level, loans expanded 1.5 percent year-on-year.
Maybank Chairwoman Mohaiyani Shamsudin said the bank was buoyed by the positive outlook in the region and Malaysia, despite some uncertainties in the operating environment.
“In particular, we await policies which are expected to be outlined by the new government in Malaysia which we hope will further drive private sector investments and enhance consumer confidence,” she said.
The country’s lenders are seeing increased domestic loan demand from sectors including manufacturing, finance and infrastructure, analysts said.
Malaysian banks with presence in the neighboring Southeast Asia countries expect stronger demand for corporate and consumer loans as economies improve, which is likely to support credit growth in 2018.
But slower economic growth is a concern and uncertainty over economic policy has increased after 92-year-old Mahathir Mohamad led an opposition alliance to a surprise election win this month. Malaysia’s first-quarter GDP grew 5.4 percent from a year earlier, its second straight quarter of slower economic growth.
Maybank’s net interest margin (NIM) — the difference between interest paid and earned and a key gauge of bank profitability — shrank slightly to 2.39 percent in the first quarter from 2.43 percent a year ago.


Lufthansa announces overhaul of budget carrier Eurowings

Updated 24 June 2019
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Lufthansa announces overhaul of budget carrier Eurowings

  • Lufthansa cited falling revenues at Eurowings as a major reason for its warning on full-year profits on June 16
  • Eurowings’ long-haul business would be managed by Lufthansa in the future

BERLIN: Lufthansa on Monday announced a turnaround plan for Eurowings in which the budget carrier will focus on short-haul flights and seek a 15 percent cut in costs by 2022 in the hope of returning to profit.
The German airline cited falling revenues at Eurowings as a major reason for its warning on full-year profits on June 16. Eurowings’ revenue was also forecast to fall sharply in the second quarter.
Lufthansa said its Eurowings fleet would be standardized on the Airbus A320 family and it would seek to boost productivity at Eurowings by limiting itself in Germany to one air operator’s certificate.
Brussels Airlines — the Belgian national flag carrier which Lufthansa took control of in 2016 — would not be integrated into Eurowings, Lufthansa said. A turnaround plan for Brussels Airlines will be announced in the third quarter.
Lufthansa also said it would start pegging its dividend payout ratio to net profit in the future to give the group more flexibility. It would pay out a regular dividend of 20 percent-40 percent of net profit, adjusted for one-off gains and losses.
Lufthansa said Eurowings’ long-haul business would be managed by Lufthansa in the future.
Carsten Spohr, Chief Executive Officer of Lufthansa, said Monday’s announcements sent “a clear signal that this company cares about its shareholders and tries to create value for them.”
Lufthansa said its Network Airlines — made up of Lufthansa, Swiss and Austrian Airlines — would aim to use innovations in sales and distribution to make a contribution to increasing unit revenues by 3 percent by 2022.
Network Airlines will aim to reduce unit costs continuously by 1 to 2 percent annually, the airline said.