KARACHI - The Board of Directors of Soneri Bank Limited, in 193rd meeting held in Murree on 28thAugust 2022, approved the bank’s condensed interim financial statements for the half year ended 30th June, 2022.

The bank posted profit before tax (PBT) of Rs. 1,864 million and profit after tax (PAT) of Rs. 545 million for the half year ended June 2022, as compared to Rs. 3,027 million and Rs. 1,822 million respectively in the same period last year. The bank’s EPS was recorded at Re. 0.4940 per share for the current reporting period, as compared to Rs. 1.6529 for the comparative prior period.

The bank’s net interest income for the half year ended at Rs. 5,200 million, decreasing by 8.86 percent against Rs. 5,705 million reported for the same period last year. The key factor behind this reduction was pressure on spreads amidst rising interest rates, and the timing difference on repricing of the overall balance sheet. Non-interest income for the period was reported at Rs. 1,904 million as against Rs. 2,051 million for the comparative prior period. Growth in expenses was restricted at 14.65 percent as compared to the prior period with non-markup expenses reported at Rs. 5,733 million for the period quarter. The bank’s net advances portfolio stood at Rs. 201,400 million as at 30 June 2022, 21.70 percent higher than the year end 2021 level, while the bank’s non-performing loans to total advances ratio improved to 4.53 percent (December 2021: 5.95 percent), with specific coverage at 76.08 percent (December 2021: 76.51 percent).

Bank’s deposits registered an increase of 10.63 percent when compared to 31 December 2021, ending at Rs. 445,864 million at 30 June 2022. The bank’s CA mix improved to 29.02 percent in June 2022 as against 27.17 percent at December 2021, with period end current accounts at Rs. 129,369 million as against Rs. 109,494 million at the year end 2021.

The bank’s period end borrowings indicate a decrease of Rs. 17.942 billion when compared to December 2021, while overall costs increased to 9.45 percent for the half year ended 30 June 2022 as against 6.28 percent for the comparative prior period.

As a result of changes introduced by the Finance Act 2022, the bank’s effective tax rate for the period increased significantly to 70.78 percent (HY 2021: 39.80 percent), as the bank had to absorb the resulting additional charge, including that for prior periods during the current period.

While the overall pace of growth in the economy has slowed down, the bank has continued to play its part in serving the needs of its customers. Performance in the short to medium term will continue to be impacted by changes to the interest rate regime, and the bank will continue to follow a risk based approach towards lending and growth. With repricing on the asset book now effective, the management expects the pressure on spreads to gradually ease out in the coming months. The bank intends to continue with measures to control costs amidst high inflationary pressures so as to achieve its desired KPIs over the remaining course of the year.