RHB retail business drives RM500m net profit in Q1
KUALA LUMPUR: RHB Bank Bhd has reported a net profit of RM500.3 million in the first quarter ended March 31, mainly driven by its retail business.
RHB Banking Group managing director Datuk Khairussaleh Ramli said the bank expected better performance this year compared with last year, even as it remained vigilant to headwinds in the operating environment.
“The group has moved on from a challenging fourth quarter last year and delivered much improved profitability in the current period.
“Our small and medium enterprises (SME) and Islamic banking portfolios have maintained their strong performances in the first quarter of the year, while our current account-savings account composition continues to strengthen.
“The group will continue to pursue selective growth while managing asset quality and enhancing productivity,” he said in a statement.
The group reported a net profit of RM261.2 million in the fourth quarter of last year.
According to the statement, Malaysia’s banking sector loan growth is expected to range between 5.5 and six per cent, with lending to businesses being the key growth driver.
Household loan growth is expected to be moderate.
RHB Bank’s retail banking remained the biggest contributor to the group despite having registered 12.6 per cent lower pre-tax profit of RM257.5 million for the quarter, compared with the corresponding period last year.
The bank said this was mainly attributed to lower net fund based income, partially offset by lower operating expenses.
Its retail loans and financing were marginally higher at RM70.5 billion as at March, but the growth in mortgages was largely offset by the decrease in auto financing and loans for purchase of securities.
Khairussaleh said in the first quarter, it had embarked on a digital transformation journey aimed at digitising processes and delivering a simple, fast and seamless experience to its customers.
“As part of our financial technology (fintech) agenda, we partnered with Funding Societies to expand funding opportunities for the under-served SME segment in line with our strategy to collaborate with fintech players in relevant spaces,” he said.
RHB Bank Bhd
expects better perfomance this year compared with last year.