October 30 (SeeNews) - Romania's Banca Comerciala Romana (BCR) reported on Friday a 43.9% fall in its nine-month consolidated net profit after minority interests to 699.5 million lei, equivalent to 166.1 million euro according to the bank’s conversion.
BCR's consolidated net profit in January-September fell on an annual basis mainly on higher provision expense and lower fee income due to lower consumer expenditure, the bank said in a statement.
BCR, Romania's top bank by assets, is majority owned by Austria's Erste Bank.
The bank's nine-month operating profit increased by 24.9% on the year to 2.223 billion lei, or 528 million euro, helped by a 12.5% rise in operating income to 3.493 billion lei. Operating expenses fell moderately by 4.2% year-on-year to 1.269 billion lei.
"While the operating result continues to be positively managed this is not sufficient to outweigh the growth in risk costs, where we are taking a prudent approach as the economic conditions remain difficult," BCR's CEO Dominic Bruynseels said in the same statement.
The conversion of the profit figures in euro was made at an exchange rate of 4.2112 Romanian lei per euro, the bank said in a statement. The bank’s results are reported under the international accounting standards, IFRS.
BCR's total assets reached 66.449 billion lei at the end of September, up 64.5% from the end of 2008. Net interest income increased by 24.2% on the year to 2.69 billion lei, the statement said.
Customers’ loan portfolio increased by 2.0% to 45.94 billion lei and deposits portfolio went up 7.1% to 35.71 billion lei.
BCR reported a cost/income ratio of 36.3% compared to 42.7% in the year-ago period. Return on equity decreased to 14.5% from 31.1% at end-September 2008.
In the third quarter alone, BCR expanded its network by opening five new branches, bringing the total number of its outlets to 657.
Erste Bank’s net profit fell by 51% to 720.1 million euro ($1.1 billion) in the first nine months of the year, Erste said in another statement on Friday.
Erste shares last traded at 122.5 lei ($42.1/28.5 euro) per share at 1139 GMT on Friday on the Bucharest Stock Exchange, BVB, up 3.99% from Thursday’s close. It is also listed on the stock exchanges in Vienna and Prague.
($ = 0.6757 euro)