Askari Bank Limited has recorded a staggering profit growth of 58% in the first half of 2020 compared with a similar period of last year despite the COVID-19 outbreak and a significant decline in interest rates.
According to the financial results, the bank made a profit of Rs. 4.95 billion from January to June 2020 as against Rs. 3.12 billion in the corresponding period of last year, showing an increase of Rs. 1.8 billion in profitability.
Various other banks also reported handsome growth in profitability which showed that their alternate business plans were effective.
Askari Bank made an interest income of Rs. 14.4 billion and earned a non-markup income of Rs. 4.5 billion during the period. Its overall expenses also grew to Rs. 9.9 billion from Rs. 8.8 billion whereas the earnings per share also surged to Rs. 3.93 from Rs. 2.48, which is good for shareholders. The dividend was not announced as per SBP’s policy which should be reevaluated in the future considering the healthy balance sheets of the bank.
During the period under review, the bank has actively been involved in various relief and loan schemes introduced by the central bank.
As the interest rates fall and various schemes were introduced including housing finance, it is expected that banks’ business will grow in the remaining half of 2020 and will reflect positively on the balance sheet.