Security Bank earns Php 5B for the first half of 2012; ROE of 31%

Security Bank Corporation (PSE: SECB) disclosed its first half 2012 financial results with a net income attributable to equity holders of P 5.0 billion, a 107% increase over the previous year’s P2.4 billion,  resulting from  the expansion of the core businesses and securities trading gains. This translates to an annualized return on equity (ROE) of 31%. Security Bank President and Chief Executive Officer Alberto S. Villarosa attributed the momentum seen in the bank’s balance sheet as a testament to the expansive confidence of both international and domestic investors on the Philippine economy as evidenced by their long-term commitment in growing key sectors in the country.  Mr. Villarosa said, ?Although our first semester results were exceptionally strong, we benefited from one-time gain from the disposal of investment securities. Our net interest margins reflect continued stiff competition for deposits and loans.? The Bank’s loan books grew 29% to P 110.3 billion versus year ago levels, driving the bank’s asset base expansion of 11% to P235 billion. Deposits grew by 26% to P 130.7 billion as of June 30, 2012. Net interest income grew to P 4.0 billion, a P 500 million or 14% increase over the first half of 2011 with net interest margin (NIM) at 3.95%. Non-interest income, net of the one-time trading gains, were steady as gains from underwriting fees covered for lower foreign exchange earnings. Operating expenses, excluding provisions for credit and impairment losses, amounted to P 2.9 billion, 40% higher than the comparable period in 2011 mainly due to the significant increase in gross receipts tax as a result of higher revenue, the consolidation of expenses of Security Bank Savings (formerly known as Premiere Development Bank) which Security Bank acquired in February 2012 as well as the opening of 10 out of the 50 new restricted-area branches during the first half of the year. Chief Financial Officer Joselito Mape said the bank is in the initial stages of an investment phase with the expansion in its branch network and the acquisition of Security Bank Savings.  Mr. Mape notes that ?The bank will remain cognizant of costs while emphasizing asset quality and prudence in implementing its growth plans. ? Security Bank’s non-performing loans ratio of 1.1% for the period remains among the best in the industry with related NPL cover at 219%. The Bank continues to maintain a fundamentally strong capital base with its capital adequacy ratio at 18.2% for the period. In anticipation of an increase in credit demand, the Bank successfully concluded a P5 billion offering of seven-year, long-term negotiable certificates of deposit (LTNCD) to its retail and institutional clients in February 2012. A second offering of LTNCD which was recently launched with a targeted deal size of at least P3 billion was oversubscribed prompting the bank to upsize the issue to P5 billion and to shorten the offer period  by one week. The second offering was priced at 5.5% and has a tenor of 7 years. In 2012, Finance Asia has named the bank as the country’s ?Best Mid-Cap Company?. Asiamoney named Security Bank the ?Best Domestic Debt House? in the Philippines in the Asiamoney Best Banks 2012 Awards.  Security Bank was cited as the ?Best Banking Group? in the Philippines at the World Finance Awards and was rated the ?Best Bank? by Asian Banker for achieving the highest return on assets in Asia.  On [SPAN style=”FONT-FAMILY: Arial; COLOR: navy; FONT-SIZE: