South Korea’s Woori Bank Co. said in a regulatory filing on Friday that its net profit surged by 21.4 percent to 716 billion won ($633 million) in the April-June period against the previous quarter, helping the bank ready to go under a bigger financial holding structure log its best-ever six-month record in the first half.
Its net income for full first six months jumped 18.9 percent on year to 1.31 trillion won.
Sales fell 4.22 percent to 1.48 trillion won in the January-June period from a year ago on a consolidated basis but operating profit jumped 21.79 percent to 1.8 trillion won over the same period.
Woori Bank’s net interest margin improved 0.03 percentage point in the second quarter ended June to 2 percent compared to the previous quarter.
On Friday, its shares gained 0.61 percent to close at 16,500 won.
Improved returns from global investments and asset management helped to fuel growth, a bank official said. The bank expects to deliver better financial statements after the transition to holding structure next year.
Woori Bank is the only nationwide lender that is not in holding structure.
Woori Bank’s non-performing loan ratio, meanwhile, fell to the industry’s lowest level of 0.51 percent in the second quarter ended June, down from 0.79 percent from the previous quarter. Default rate also improved 0.04 percentage point to 0.33 percent over the same period.
Woori Bank’s interest income in the January-June period reached 2.76 trillion won, up 8.4 percent from a year ago.
Shinhan Investment Corp. said in a recent report that Woori Bank has posted solid performance in the second quarter and that it will be able to successfully transform into a holding company structure. The brokerage suggested positive investment opinion and maintained its target price at 22,000 won.
By Kim Dong-eun and Lee Eun-joo
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