Merchant Profits

Feb 23, 2011 (LBO) – Merchant Bank of Sri Lanka (MBSL), a unit of state-run Bank of Ceylon said group profits for December 2010 rose 243 percent on wider interest margins and higher non-operating incomes. MBSL, which also has a finance company, an insurer and a savings bank under its wing said group revenues rose 17.7 percent to 852 million rupees in the December quarter in accounts released to the Colombo Stock Exchange.

Interest income rose 3.6 percent to 589 million rupees, interest expense fell a steep 20 percent to 272.3 million rupees allowing net interest income to rise 40 percent to 317 million rupees.

The firm also reported capital gains of 57 million rupees from listed shares (loss of 5.9 million last year) fee and commission income of 44.2 million up from 20.5 million and unspecified other income of 119.6 million rupees, up from 82 million a year earlier.

MBSL said income from insurance was 41.0 million rupees, down from 56.6 million rupees a year earlier.

During the year MBSL Insurance Company, had found an “unrecognized reinsurance liability applicable to previous year” of 53 million rupees. During the year MBSL had invested 50 million rupees in the insurer through the