Saudi National Bank’s third-quarter profit up 18.7 percent

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Saudi National Bank, the Kingdom’s biggest lender, said on Sunday its net profit in the third quarter rose 18.7 percent from the same period year before on higher operating income and lower net impairments for expected credit losses.

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SNB posted net profit of $1.26 billion (4.725 billion riyals) in the quarter, up from $1.06 billion) 3.98 billion riyals a year earlier. That was below the EFG Hermes estimate of $1.4 billion (5.25 billion riyals).

Operating income was $2.25 billion (8.45 billion riyals), up 7.3 percent from $2.10 (7.88 billion riyals) a year earlier.

Net impairment charges for expected credit losses were $400 million (1.52 billion riyals), less than half the $910 million (3.43 billion) riyals a year prior.

“Total operating expenses including impairments were lower by 11.5 percent mainly due to lower staff expenses, amortization of intangible assets, other general and administrative expenses, and net impairment charge for expected credit losses,” SNB said.

Earnings per share rose to $0.80 (3.02 riyals) from $0.63 (2.35 riyals).

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