Asia United Bank Corp. (AUB) will review individual accounts to assess client needs during the coronavirus pandemic and ensure the bank’s stability.

AUB Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Abraham T. Co acknowledged how the virus outbreak resulted in “economic damage for customers without the fault of their own.”

“We have an obligation to help them but at the same time, we also have an obligation to ensure the safety for the depositor and the financial stability of our bank,” Mr. Co said during the bank’s online annual stockholders meeting on Tuesday.

“So we have to review all the accounts one by one, to ensure that all the ways are addressed and our customers are properly helped,” he added.

AUB President Manuel A. Gomez said the bank is preparing for the economic impact of the pandemic, which will likely affect their asset quality.

“Preparing for it means riding out the current crisis by keeping a healthy balance sheet, staying liquid and prioritizing and proactively managing the deployment of both financial and non-financial resources to effectively manage the market and credit risks,” he said.

Mr. Gomez said the bank will continue to boost its technology to provide continued services amid the social distancing measures in place.

“In these contactless times, we cannot overemphasize the need to intensify IT (information technology) collaboration to overcome the limitation the pandemic has brought,” he said.

He added that AUB will continue to ramp up its presence in “areas demonstrating vibrant business activities” and will focus on keeping their low-cost current account, savings account standing.

The bank’s net earnings rose 7.36% to P1.183 billion in the first quarter from the P1.101 billion seen a year ago, according to the bank’s financial report for the period.

Its net interest income also jumped 27.26% to P2.762 billion from P2.17 billion in the comparable year-ago period.

Meanwhile, total operating expenses increased by 7.03% to P1.522 billion from P1.421 billion.

The bank’s shares ended trading at P47.40 apiece on Tuesday, up by 0.85% or 40 centavos from its previous close. — L.W.T. Noble