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Monday, 1 September 2014

Qatar: Islamic banks outperform conventional peers

DOHA: The Islamic banks in Qatar outpaced conventional banks in the country in terms of growth in net profit during the second quarter of 2014 (Q2,14).

Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) reported a 15.0 percent YoY bottom-line growth in Q2, 14, mainly due to improvement in top-line as well as fee income. Top-line growth was backed by strong financing growth.

Masraf Al Rayan reported 12.1 percent YoY growth in its bottom-line due to strong growth in net financing income,  Global Investment House (GIH) noted in its Q2, 14 “GCC Banking Sector” analysis.

The GIH analysts who covered five major Qatar-based banks   said the loan books of banks in Qatar grew the most in the region, by registering 15.4 percent growth on year-on-year basis, followed by the banks in Saudi Arabia (9 percent), UAE (4.8 percent) and Kuwait (4.6 percent).  

Due to stable growth in loan book, net interest income (NII) of GCC banks rose 4.3 percent YoY. Qatar’s NII grew by 2.9 percent. NII growth was led by UAE-based banks (8.2 percent YoY), followed by those in  Saudi Arabia (7.3 percent. NII of Kuwait declined 6.8 percent.

The asset base of GCC banks expanded by 9.5 percent YoY to $1.11 trillionn in 2Q14, with all the countries witnessing stable YoY growth. Increase in loan book supported the overall asset growth. Qatar-based banks witnessed the strongest growth in total assets (13.9 percent YoY), followed by banks in Kuwait (8.9 percent ), Saudi Arabia (8.7 percent ) and UAE (7.7 percent )

Net earnings of  GCC banks under GIH coverage increased 11.1 percent YoY to $5.3bn in 2Q14, mostly due to higher NII non-interest income and a 7.7 percent YoY drop in provisions;though4.6 percent YoY increase in operating expenses (opex) partially dampened the profit growth. Net profit of banks in the Kuwait and UAE increased by 20.7 percent  and 20.1 percent YoY, respectively while net profit of Saudi Arabia and Qatar based banks increased decently by 7.4 percent and 3.5 percent , respectively.  On QoQ basis,  net profit  of  the GCC aggregate  increased  5.4  percent, with Saudi Arabia and UAE (7.9 percent each) , followed by  Qatar (6.0  percent) ;  while  Kuwait witnessed a 14.9 percent decline in net profit on QoQ basis.

Qatar-based banks maintained their loan growth momentum due to an increase in public sector spending backed by several developmental initiatives taken by the government.

Among Qatar -based banks, Commercial Bank of Qatar, Qatar Islamic Bank and Doha Bank registered higher growth in loan book of 33.4 percent, 31.8 percent and 25.3 percent YoY, respectively.

Provision expenses of  GCC banks under GIH coverage declined 7.7 percent YoY during  Q14; however, increased 14.0 percent QoQ. Banks in Qatar witnessed 21.2 percent YoY plunge in provisions. Provisions of Qatar National Bank reduced by 56.4 percent YoY during the quarter.

(The Peninsula / 31 August 2014)
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