AUB books higher income in first half

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Asia United Bank Corp. (AUB)

ASIA UNITED Bank (AUB) saw higher net earnings in the first half of the year supported by double-digit growth in its core businesses.

A disclosure to the local bourse on Wednesday showed the Ng-led lender and its subsidiaries, namely Cavite United Rural Bank and Rural Bank of Angeles in Pampanga, recorded a consolidated net income of P1.57 billion in the six months ended June, up 17.5% from a year ago.

AUB said its net income in the semester was boosted by growth in interest income from loans and receivables which rose 29.6% from the comparable year-ago period.

The bank also booked a 42.6% increase in other operating income.

Net interest income stood at P3.56 billion, up 12.3% from a year earlier. Total loans and receivables grew 25.8% to P135.19 billion as of June as commercial and other retail loans such as auto, housing and salary loans posted double-digit growths, the bank noted.

On the other hand, total deposits expanded 11.8% to P169.04 billion, primarily supported by the bank’s network expansion to 255 branches, nationwide as well as a more intensified deposit-generation campaign for branch banking and other business segments.

The bank’s bottom line translated to a return on assets of 1.6% and a return of equity of 12% from the year-ago ratios of 1.5% and 11%, respectively.

The lender’s net interest margin, meanwhile, was at 4.3%.

Overall, AUB’s assets increased by 10.9% to P209.461 billion as of June.

AUB President Manuel A. Gomez said the bank was able to sustain its momentum in growing its business amid intensifying competition as well as volatile financial markets.

“Our [information technology] innovations have enabled us to differentiate ourselves in serving corporates and small and medium enterprises, as well as in our growing consumer lending business,” Mr. Gomez was quoted as saying in the regulatory filing.

The bank said it has been enhancing its electronic platforms to improve the banking experience for customers.

Recently, AUB partnered with mobile payment providers WeChat Pay and Alipay to service the influx of Chinese visitors in the country.

Shares in AUB closed at P59.95 apiece on Wednesday, up 75 centavos or 1.27%. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal