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Bank Leumi Q2 income rises YOY

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Bank Leumi Q2 income rises YOY

Bank Leumi le-Israel BM reported second-quarter net income attributable to shareholders of 903 million Israeli shekels, up from 876 million shekels a year ago.

EPS for the quarter stood at 59 agorot, compared to 57 agorot a year earlier.

Net interest income for the period increased year over year to 2.41 billion shekels from 2.17 billion shekels. Fees and commissions also increased, to 1.04 billion shekels from 1.01 billion shekels.

Noninterest income fell on a yearly basis to 1.17 billion shekels from 1.22 billion shekels. Income in respect of loan losses amounted to 14 million shekels, compared with expenses of 42 million shekels a year earlier.

For the first half, the bank's attributable net income increased on a yearly basis to 1.63 billion shekels from 1.50 billion shekels. Return on equity for the first half was 9.9%, compared to 9.6% a year earlier.

In the third quarter, the lender expects to record a pretax revenue of 124 million shekels from the sale of unit Leumi Partners' holdings in Avgol Industries, while the expected profit from the sale of Leumi Card is also expected to be realized in the coming quarters.

The bank's common equity Tier 1 capital ratio stood at 11.17% at June-end, compared to 11.43% at the end of 2017 and 11.21% a year earlier. The leverage ratio stood at 7.00% at the end of June, compared to 6.94% at 2017-end and 6.93% a year ago.

The lender will distribute a dividend of 361 million shekels for the second quarter, representing 40% of its net income. Shareholders will receive a dividend of 23.92 agorot per share on Sept. 6.

In March, Bank Leumi unveiled plans to buy back up to 700 million shekels of its own shares. So far, the lender has acquired shares amounting to 303 million shekels, and it said it will buy a further 397 million shekels in shares to complete its buyback plan.

As of Aug. 13, US$1 was equivalent to 3.69 Israeli shekels.