Maybank 1Q profit up 6% at RM1.7b, targets above-industry loan growth

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 28): Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) reported a 6% rise in first quarter net profit from a year earlier as interest and Islamic banking income grew. Higher insurance income also supported bottom line growth.

In a statement to the exchange today, Maybank (fundamental: 1.5; valuation: 1.45) said net profit rose to RM1.7 billion in the first quarter ended March 31, 2015 (1QFY15) from RM1.6 billion. Revenue was higher at RM9.18 billion versus RM8.36 billion.

According to Maybank, profit had also increased on "higher foreign exchange gain of RM232.6 million, higher unrealised mark-to-market gain on financial assets at fair value through profit or loss (FVTPL) of RM213.1 million and higher fee income of RM151.9 million".

"In 2015, the group will intensify focus on fee income business activities in its key markets. This will include capturing regional deals and trade finance opportunities, building our wealth management business and expanding our insurance business," Maybank said.

The group said it expected its FY15 financials to be satisfactory amid a more challenging Malaysian operating backdrop.

Maybank said loan growth in the domestic banking sector was seen lower at between 7% and 8% in 2015. This compares to the 9.3% expansion in 2014.

In 2015, Maybank said it hoped to achieve loan growth of between 9% and 10% and return on equity of between 13% and 14%.

Both targets come under the group's key performance indicators list.

At 12:30pm, Maybank shares fell five sen or 0.5% to settle at RM9.09 for a market capitalisation of RM84.81 billion.

Some 2.5 million shares changed hands.

(Note: The Edge Research's fundamental score reflects a company’s profitability and balance sheet strength, calculated based on historical numbers. The valuation score determines if a stock is attractively valued or not, also based on historical numbers. A score of 3 suggests strong fundamentals and attractive valuations.)