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Healthy banks escape red numbers

THE HEALTHY bank environment has also been reflected in midyear results reported by the significant players of the Slovak banking sector, who have been successfully avoiding slipping into the red.
Slovakia's largest commercial bank, Slovenská sporiteľňa (SLSP), provided 24,950 consumer loans, totaling Sk2.7 billion (€65.2 million), over the first half of 2003. SLSP reached a net consolidated profit of Sk1.4 billion (€33.9 million) over H1 2003, benefiting mainly in the field of non-interest income, which grew more than 69 percent year-on-year to Sk1.6 billion (€38.5 million).

THE HEALTHY bank environment has also been reflected in midyear results reported by the significant players of the Slovak banking sector, who have been successfully avoiding slipping into the red.

Slovakia's largest commercial bank, Slovenská sporiteľňa (SLSP), provided 24,950 consumer loans, totaling Sk2.7 billion (€65.2 million), over the first half of 2003. SLSP reached a net consolidated profit of Sk1.4 billion (€33.9 million) over H1 2003, benefiting mainly in the field of non-interest income, which grew more than 69 percent year-on-year to Sk1.6 billion (€38.5 million).

The second largest bank in Slovakia, Všeobecná úverová banka, (VÚB) plans to close the year with an operating profit of Sk2.7 billion (€65.2 million).

The H1 net interest income reached Sk3.2 billion (€77.5 million), and the net revenues from fees and comissions was Sk104.4 million (€2.5 million). General operating costs totalled Sk1.8 billion (€44 million).

The balance-sheet total of VÚB reached Sk195.7 billion (€4.7 billion) in late June, while client deposits stood at Sk 142.2 billion (€3.4 billion).

One of Slovakia's most successful banks, Tatra Banka, closed the first six months of 2003 with a consolidated profit of Sk1.1 billion (€26.6 million), while net interest income, and other revenues of the group stood at Sk2 billion (€47.3 million) at the end of June. Net revenues from fees and commissions climbed to Sk523.8 million (€12.7 million).

Tatra Banka's balance-sheet total stood at Sk129.3 billion (€3.1 billion) in late June, with debt securities constituting Sk54.6 billion (€1.3 billion) of that number. Client loans achieved Sk53.7 billion (€1.3 billion), while client deposits amounted to Sk92.455 billion (€2.2 billion).

UniBanka (formerly Poľnobanka) made a profit of Sk151 million (€3.6 million) over the first half of 2003, which translates into a 77 percent improvement in the banking house's y/y run.

The balance-sheet total of the bank was Sk37.784 billion (€912.8 million), increasing by 15.65 percent y/y. Net interest income, and similar revenues reached Sk615.4 million (€14.9 million), and net revenues from fees and commissions were standing at Sk164.1 million (€4 million).

UniBanka created reserves to loans of Sk123 million (€3 million), and provisions of Sk52.4 million (€1.3 million).

The Slovak arm of the Czech bank, ČSOB, closed the first half of 2003 with net earnings of Sk122 million (€2.9 million). Gross loans to clients went up 38.6 percent y/y to rest at Sk25.9 billion (€624.6 million) in late June. Client deposits reached Sk40.266 billion (€972.8 million). ČSOB provided consumer loans totalling Sk740 million (€17.9 million), and Sk492.3 million (€11.9 million) flew into 495 mortgages.

ČSOB is the first bank on the Slovak market to issue Visa Electron chip payment cards in the new EMV standard, in cooperation with Visa International.

The number of HVB Bank Slovakia clients reached almost 21,200 at midyear 2003, which is an increase of 26.4 percent y/y. Client deposits amounted to Sk18.29 billion (€441.9 million), while clients loans swelled to over 24.8 percent y/y to rest at Sk25.87 billion (€625 million) in late June.

Private client loans exceeded Sk762.1 million (€18.4 million). The bank reported total assets of Sk41.418 billion (€1 billion) at the end of June.

Istrobanka closed the first half of this year with a consolidated profit of Sk54.304 million (€1.3 million), which was significantly lower than the Sk261 million (€6.3 million) consolidated profit it reported for the same period of 2002. The balance-sheet total of the bank reached Sk24.854 billion (€600.4 million) as of June 30. Client deposits stood at Sk17.266 billion (€417.1 million), and liabilities towards banks were at Sk3.495 billion (€84.4million). Share capital of the bank reached Sk1.75 billion (€42.3 million).

OTP Banka Slovensko earned a profit of Sk22 million (€530,000) over the first half of 2003. It ended the same period of last year almost Sk68 million (€1.6 million) in the red. Net interest revenues of the bank reached Sk356.4 million (€1.6 million) and net revenues from fees and commissions were Sk69.6 million (€1.7 million). General operating costs of the bank stood at Sk369.5 million (€8.9 million).

The balance-sheet total of the bank was Sk20.813 billion (€502.8 million). The volume of loans provided to clients made up 60.9 percent of the bank's assets, amounting to Sk12.677 billion (€306.3 million) in late June. Client deposits of Sk13.172 billion (€318.2 million) constituted 63.3 percent of the bank's total liabilities.

Ľudová Banka, owned by Volksbank International AG, earned a consolidated profit of Sk189.4 million (€4.6 million). Net interest income and other revenues of the group represented Sk539.7 million (€13 million) by the end of June, while net revenues from fees and commissions stood at Sk51.3 million (€1.2 million).

The balance-sheet total of Ľudová Banka stood at Sk27.826 billion (€670 million) in late June, while claims towards clients of Sk13.327 billion (€322 million) were their largest item. Client deposits amounting to Sk1.99 billion (€531.2 million) made up 79 percent of the bank's total liabilities.

(Jana Liptáková of SITA contributed to this report.)

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