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Public Bank Group Achieved Pre-tax Profit of RM5.16 Billion for The First Nine Months of 2017

For Immediate Release

26 October 2017

PUBLIC BANK GROUP ACHIEVED PRE-TAX PROFIT OF RM5.16 BILLION FOR THE FIRST NINE MONTHS OF 2017

Chairman’s Review

For the first nine months of 2017, the Public Bank Group continued to make good progress, with its pre-tax profit increasing to RM5.16 billion, representing 8.4% growth from the corresponding period in 2016. Over the same period, net profit attributable to shareholders increased by 7.0% to RM3.98 billion.
 
The Public Bank Group’s sustained business momentum continued to be driven largely by its healthy growth in its loans and deposits business, generating 8.0% growth in its net interest income. Non-interest income also recorded a healthy growth of 7.6% during the period.
 
The Founder and Chairman of Public Bank, Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr. Teh Hong Piow said, “The macro environment and the more stringent regulatory requirements have presented many challenges to the banking business. Notwithstanding this, the Public Bank Group’s strategy has continued to deliver values and returns. The Group’s ability to sustain its business performance in this challenging market condition demonstrates its underlying strength as reflected in the Group retaining its competitive position.”
 
Tan Sri Teh added, “The Public Bank Group continued to outperform the Malaysian banking industry as reflected in its key performance indicators. As at the end of September 2017, the Group’s net return on equity stood at 15.4% with an efficient cost-to-income ratio of 32.8%, while the Group’s gross impaired loan ratio remained low at 0.5%.”
 
Healthy Loan and Deposit Growth

In the first nine months of 2017, the Public Bank Group’s total loans recorded 3.3% annualised growth to RM301.3 billion. The Group’s domestic loans portfolio grew at a higher annualised rate of 4.6%, as compared to the banking industry’s annualised growth rate of 3.5%.
 
“The Public Bank Group continued to focus on the financing for the purchase of residential properties, passenger vehicles and lending to small and medium enterprises, which remained our major  sources of  income. The Group has also continued to  retain leading market share in these lending segments,” commented Tan Sri Teh.
 
On deposit-taking, the Public Bank Group’s total deposits grew at an annualised rate of 5.4% to RM322.6 billion over the first nine months of 2017.  On the domestic front, total deposits grew at an annualised rate of 5.7% as compared to 3.7% annualised growth recorded in the domestic industry’s total deposits.
 
Growth in Non-interest Income
 
In the first nine months of 2017, the Public Bank Group’s non-interest income recorded a healthy growth of 7.6%, mainly attributed to the favourable growth in income from the Group’s unit trust management business, as well as fee income from its transactional banking services. 
 
Public Mutual Berhad, the Public Bank Group’s wholly-owned subsidiary, recorded 15.5% growth in profit during the nine months period ended September 2017, and continued to maintain its pole position in the domestic private unit trust industry. As at the end of September 2017, Public Mutual captured an overall retail market share of 41.8%. With 5 new unit trust funds launched over the first nine months of the year, Public Mutual currently manages a total of 138 funds with a total net asset value of RM78.5 billion under its management as at the end of September 2017.
 
Tan Sri Teh reiterated, “Non-interest income has remained integral to the Public Bank Group’s revenue source. The Public Bank Group will further strengthen its capability in growing this revenue stream through the offering of innovative products and proactive marketing and cross selling strategies.”
 
Prudent Approach in Cost Management
 
In the first nine months of 2017, the Public Bank Group continued to sustain an efficient level of cost-to-income ratio at 32.8%, significantly better than the banking industry’s average cost-to-income ratio of 45.8%.
 
Tan Sri Teh highlighted, “The Public Bank Group has put in considerable efforts to strengthen its productivity in order to sustain its cost efficiency.  When rising prices and cost of compliance are exerting pressure on the Group’s expenses, the Group has remained highly committed to financial discipline while ensuring compliance with regulations.”
 
Sustained Strong Asset Quality
 
Tan Sri Teh said, “The Public Bank Group has always focused on asset quality in the pursuit of business growth. Thus, the Group has been able to sustain its stable asset quality even in challenging times. As at the end of September 2017, the Group’s gross impaired loan ratio of 0.5% continued to remain the best in the domestic banking industry.”
 
Overseas Operations
 
The Public Bank Group’s overseas operations continued to drive revenue growth for the Group. For the first nine months of 2017, the Group’s overseas operations contributed 9.8% to the Group’s pre-tax profit, mainly attributed to Public Financial Holdings Limited Group in Hong Kong and Cambodian Public Bank Plc.
 
Tan Sri Teh reiterated, The Public Bank Group remains committed in growing its overseas operations, particularly in Indo-China and Hong Kong. In pursuit of the Group’s organic growth strategy, it will continue to explore opportunities for the opening of new branches and diversification of products and services to grow its regional operations.”
 
Healthy Capital Position
 
The Public Bank Group has remained well-capitalised with its common equity Tier 1 capital ratio, Tier 1 capital ratio and total capital ratio standing at 11.7%, 12.4% and 15.4% respectively as at the end of September 2017.
 
Tan Sri Teh emphasised, “Maintaining a healthy capital position has always been an important factor to banking resilience. It has remained a strategic action for the Public Bank Group to ensure its capitalisation complies with the regulatory requirement and is supportive of its business growth.”
 
Group’s Prospects
 
The Malaysian economy grew by a stronger than expected rate of 5.7% in the first half of 2017. The growing domestic economic activities, coupled with the firming external demand, are widely expected to underscore higher  GDP growth in 2017.
 
On the banking business, Tan Sri Teh commented, “The banking sector will continue to benefit from the growing economy. Nevertheless, we remain cautious as  downside risks will continue to exert pressure on consumer sentiment.”
 
Tan Sri Teh added, “With its strong foundation, the Public Bank Group has always been in good position to support the country’s economy. The Group will continue to leverage on its strong PB brand and its efficient banking resources and infrastructures to serve the public.”

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Y.Bhg. Tan Sri Dato' Sri Dr. Teh Hong Piow
Founder and Chairman of Public Bank

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