CCB surprises as profit rises 5.6pc

Business | Stella Zhai 29 Aug 2019

The net profit of China Construction Bank (0939) for the first half edged up by 5.59 percent from a year ago to 155.7 billion yuan (HK$170.61 billion), higher than market expectations.

Earnings per share was 62 fen. No interim dividend was declared.

Net interest income went up by 4.57 percent over the same period of last year to 250.4 billion yuan, while net interest margin slid seven basis points to 2.27 percent.

The non-performing loans ratio decreased by three basis points from the end of last year to 1.43 percent.

Elsewhere, the net profit of China Taiping Insurance (0966) for the first half rose 29.5 percent to HK$6.74 billion, and its life insurance arm in Hong Kong recorded premium income in the six months surging by 73.4 percent year-on-year to HK$1.78 billion.

The insurer's premiums and policy fees reached HK$138.9 billion in the first half, increasing 6.8 percent year-on-year.

Chief financial officer Zhang Ruohan said the company's overseas investments mainly target long-term government bonds yields, and the company doesn't worry too much about the short-term interest rate fluctuations.

He Shihong, general manager of the business management department, said life insurance premium income in Hong Kong grew sharply as a result of the improvement in its sales strategy, and Taiping is preparing to launch Voluntary Health Insurance Scheme plans in Hong Kong.

Earnings per share was HK$1.841, and no interim dividend was declared. Zhang said the company will maintain a final dividend of 10 HK cents this year, but the board may consider increasing the dividend payment gradually.

In other news, New China Life Insurance (1336) saw an 81.8 percent increase in first-half net profit to 10.55 billion yuan but new business value fell 8.7 percent to 5.89 billion yuan.

Revenues for the half-year rose by 7.4 year-on-year to 89 billion yuan, and total written premiums and policy fees grew 9 percent year-on-year to 74.02 billion yuan.

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