KUALA LUMPUR: Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) has lowered headline key performance indicators (KPI) for both its group loan and group deposit growth to between 9% and 10% for its current financial year ending December 2015 (FY15), on expected economic headwinds this year. This is compared to its guidance of 13% and 10% to 12%, respectively, for FY14.
“The guidance that we gave [for this year] is slightly lower than last year as there will obviously be an impact [from expected economic pressures], but there are other segments that we think there will be an opportunity to grow further,” Maybank group president and chief executive officer Datuk Abdul Farid Alias (pic) told reporters during a briefing yesterday. He declined to elaborate on what those segments were.
Abdul Farid said the banking group had achieved loan growth of 9% for FY14, driven by the small and medium enterprise (SME), consumer and housing segments.
As for the group’s return on equity (ROE) guidance, Maybank is maintaining its target at 13% to 14% for FY15, the same as its guidance for the year before.
“It could fall somewhere between that range, depending on market activity and the market can be quite fickle,” said Abdul Farid.
For the fourth quarter ended December 2014 (4QFY14), Maybank (fundamental: 1.5; valuation: 1.3) posted a 12% year-on-year increase in net profit to RM1.93 billion or 20.75 sen per share from RM1.73 billion or 19.58 sen per share, on higher net interest, Islamic banking and insurance income.
Revenue came in higher at RM9.66 billion, up 16.84% from 4QFY13’s RM8.27 billion, on improvements in net interest income, Islamic banking scheme income, net earned insurance premiums, and other operating income, its filing with Bursa Malaysia yesterday showed.
The group also announced a dividend of 33 sen per share for 4QFY14, bringing its full-year dividends to 57 sen as opposed to 53.5 sen in FY13.
Its full FY14 net profit was marginally higher at RM6.72 billion, up 2.5% from RM6.55 billion a year earlier, while revenue rose 7.4% to RM35.71 billion from RM33.25 billion previously.
Abdul Farid said the focus for 2015 would be to strengthen revenue growth by focusing on group-wide productivity, deploying its capital efficient strategy and continuing its international market performance.
He added that the group is confident of starting branch operations in Myanmar this year, and is eyeing opportunities to enter the Thai market as well.
Maybank shares ended 14 sen or 1.55% higher at RM9.16, with a market capitalisation of RM85.37 billion.
This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on February 27, 2015.