FCMB Group’s galloping pace of profit growth in the year gained further speed in the final quarter to hit an all-time high of N32.6 billion at the end of the 2022 financial year.
The bank’s full-year financial report at the end of December 2022 yet to be audited shows that after-tax profit accelerated from N5.2 billion in the first quarter to N8.5 billion in the second and from N9.2 billion in the third to N9.7 billion in the final quarter.
The bank’s closing profit for the year stands at 56 percent above the N21 billion after-tax profit it posted in 2021. The outstanding profit growth is the strongest the bank has recorded since its profit tripled to N14.3 billion in 2016.
The performance is despite pressure from rising interest and loan loss expenses. Interest expenses surged upward in the final quarter at 76 percent quarter-on-quarter to about N37 billion for the quarter.
At N97.6 billion in the full year, the cost of funds grew by 37 per cent, ahead of an increase of 34.5 per cent in interest income.
Net interest income still grew strongly by N30 billion or 32.4 per cent to over N120 billion at the end of the financial year.
Despite that loan impairment expenses dropped in the final quarter, the full-year position shows a huge increase of 64 per cent to roughly N25 billion.
The bank however made some cost savings that helped to moderate the cost increases. The cost savings were extracted from personnel expenses, which grew by 14 per cent to about N36 billion.
Also, administrative costs moderated at an increase of 21 per cent to N43 billion and other operating expenses slowed down at an increase of less than 11 per cent to N23.5 billion.
The cost savings enabled the bank’s management to reinforce revenue gains, improve profit margin and drive profit growth. Inside Business