Forging Ahead

Nov 15, 2007 (LBO) – Commercial Bank of Ceylon has reported a net profit growth of 30 percent to 1.1 billion rupees in the quarter ended September 2007 with foreign exchange earnings almost doubling to 519 million rupees. Total revenues grew 56 percent to 9.4 billion rupees, with net interest income also keeping pace at 3.1 billion rupees.

However charges for bad loans shot up to 566.8 million from just 29 million a year earlier with a specific provision of 470 million rupees.

In the 9-months to September the group reported net profits of 3.3 billion rupees on revenues of 25.5 billion rupees.

Ranjith Samaranayake, the bank's head of finance, says interest margins have been managed despite volatile market conditions.

Other income was down 8.33 percent to 2.1 billion rupees. But Samaranayake says last year's numbers were inflated by a 211.1 million rupee capital gain on DFCC shares.

Performing loans grew 10 percent to 163.6 billion rupees while deposits grew 10.7 percent to 174.5 billion rupees.

Group gross assets have grown 15.5 percent to 258 billion rupees. .

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