Saudi’s Al Rajhi Bank beats forecasts but reports 3 percent drop in Q3 profit

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Al Rajhi Bank, Saudi Arabia’s second-largest lender by assets, reported a 3 percent drop in third-quarter net profit on Sunday, but beat analysts’ forecasts.

The bank made 2.66 billion riyals ($709.28 million) in the three months to Sept. 30, down from 2.74 billion riyals in the same period a year earlier, it said in a bourse statement.

Analysts had forecast a net profit of 2.39 billion riyals, according to Refinitiv data.

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Al Rajhi said an increase in expenses as a result of a rise in salaries and employee-related benefits, along with general and other administrative expenses, led to its weaker performance in the third quarter.

The bank also attributed the decline in profits to a 39.9 percent increase in credit impairment charges to 465 million riyals.

Operating income for the quarter rose by 3.4 percent on the corresponding period of 2019 to 5.16 billion riyals, while profits from special commissions increased 0.8 percent to 4.2 billion riyals.

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