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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 13 December 2018

First Abu Dhabi Bank says second quarter profit falls 4 per cent amid slowdown in business

Net interest income declines 6 per cent to Dh3.17bn

First Abu Dhabi Bank, the biggest bank by assets in the UAE, said second quarter net profit fell 4 per cent as a result of a slowdown in business.

Net profit decreased to Dh2.56 billion compared to Dh2.68bn in the same period last year.

One analyst polled by Reuters at the Egyptian investment bank EFG-Hermes forecast a net profit of Dh2.57bn.

Net interest income dropped 6 per cent in the three months ended June to Dh3.17bn compared to Dh3.35bn in the same period last year.

“FAB’s performance in the first half of 2017 demonstrates the Group’s resilience during a period marked by softer economic conditions," said Abdulhamid Saeed, the bank's chief executive.

"We ended the period with a strong balance sheet, an industry leading cost-to-income ratio, as well as a robust liquidity profile and capital position - meaning we are well-placed to meet the evolving regulatory landscape."

Net non-interest income, the money the bank makes from fees and commissions, declined 19 per cent to Dh84 m versus Dh1.04bn in the same period last year. Money set aside to cover bad debt fell 12 per cent to Dh611m from Dh696m in the same period the previous year, making it one of the brighter spots.

The quarter was the first post-merger quarter for the bank after it was created through the combination of National Bank of Abu Dhabi and FGB. During the quarter, the bank launched its new brand identity and motto "Grow Stronger." Progress has also been made in integrating IT systems as well as the completion of the organizational structure across the group.

“I am pleased with the progress and execution of our integration plan at this early stage in our transformation journey," Mr Saeed said.

"The consolidation of our businesses and operations, and the ongoing realisation of synergies are strong testaments to the benefits of this merger as we continue to create value for customers, employees, shareholders and communities, and empower them to grow stronger through differentiation, agility and innovation.”