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8 August 2009

Singapore bank posts 15% drop in profit

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Southeast Asia's biggest bank DBS Group said on Friday that its net profit fell 15 percent in the June quarter from a year ago, but beat expectations as higher revenue from trading and fees offset bad debt charges, reported AFP.

DBS earned S$552 million ($384.35 million) in the three months to June compared with S$652 million in the same quarter last year. Analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires had expected net profit to come in at S$459 million.

Revenue for the quarter was up 12 percent to S$1.79 billion, the bank said in a statement. DBS, Southeast Asia's biggest lender by assets, said net interest income climbed 5.0 percent to S$1.11 billion.

Non-interest income grew 25.7 percent to S$680 million as revenues from stockbroking, investment banking and wealth management rose due to improved conditions in the capital markets.

The bank's non-performing loan ratio expanded to 2.8 percent in June from 2.0 percent in March, which DBS said was due primarily to exposures to the shipping industry and Middle East companies and institutions.

DBS said it took allowances for credit and other losses of S$466 million during the June quarter, up from S$56 million a year ago and S$414 million in the first quarter.

Specific allowances for loans were S$272 million, up from S$52 million a year ago and S$225 million in the first quarter.

"We will continue to focus on our customers, on managing risks and on being disciplined in managing our costs," said DBS chairman Koh Boon Hwee, who has been overseeing the bank since the death of chief executive Richard Stanley in April.


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