METROPOLITAN BANK & Trust Co. (Metrobank) saw its net income climb during the second quarter, driven by double-digit increases in both commercial and retail loans.

In a disclosure, the Ty-led bank reported an unaudited consolidated net income at P3.934 billion from April-June, up 3.25% from the P3.81 billion posted during the same period last year.

Interest income picked up by nearly a fifth to P19.819 billion from a year ago, driven by a surge in total lending. This helped offset a modest 3.29% decline in other income which totalled P5.761 billion, on the back of lower fee collections and miscellaneous sources. Meanwhile, trading gains surged by a third.

Operating expenses incurred by bank posted an 11.9% rise to P12.644 billion as it paid bigger salaries and benefits to its employees from a year ago alongside higher equipment costs, according to the bank’s quarterly report.

As a result, Metrobank booked a P9.496-billion consolidated net profit during the first semester, up 4.79% from P9.062 billion during the comparable period in 2016. Total loans jumped by 21% to hit P1.1 trillion, supported by a 24% increase in corporate lending and a 17% rise in consumer credit, largely driven by car loans, the bank told the Philippine Stock Exchange.

The listed lender said the sustained growth in loans and deposits — which grew to P1.5 trillion — was boosted by the economy’s above-six percent expansion.

“Results from recent quarters demonstrate our ability to deliver quality earnings from our core banking business,” Jette C. Gamboa, Metrobank senior vice- president and head of strategic planning, was quoted as saying in the statement.

“Metrobank is very optimistic about the growth prospects of the economy. Our strong capital position and healthy balance sheet allow us to continuously support the business needs of our customers.”

In turn, Metrobank said its total assets reached P2 trillion. It is the second-biggest bank in asset terms as of end-March, according to central bank data.

The listed lender added that the bank remains “very liquid” with a loan-to-deposit ratio of 77%.

Despite the surge in lending, the bank reported that the share of soured debts stood at just 0.9% of the total portfolio, adding that it had more than enough reserves to cover the total potential defaults.

On the other hand, the bank’s capital adequacy ratio stood at 16%, well above the 10% requirement set by the central bank. Common equity tier 1 ratio stood at 13.2%.

Metrobank also posted a higher return on equity at 9.46% as of end-June, while return on assets slipped to 0.99% from 1.04% a year ago.

Shares at Metrobank closed at P87 each on Monday, rising by 95 centavos or 1.10% from P86.05 apiece on Friday.