Profit up 69% at Standard Chartered

Standard Chartered said that its profit jumped 69% in the second quarter, as the Asia-focused bank’s recovery picked up on easing credit impairments.

The upbeat 3 August earnings from Standard Chartered followed results from peer HSBC, which earlier this week said its second-quarter profit soared more than 10-fold, in a sign of the strength of Asia’s economic rebound from the peak of the pandemic’s impact last year.

Standard Chartered’s first-quarter pretax underlying profit was $1.24bn, compared with $733m a year earlier.

The improvement was mainly driven by sharply lower impairments, as the bank became more optimistic about its business momentum.

Operating income fell to $3.69bn from $3.72bn, dragged by weaker net interest income after the governments of several Asian countries further cut rates in recent months amid a resurgence of Covid-19 infections in the region. Its net interest margin fell 0.06 percentage point to 1.22% in the period.

The bank resumed its interim dividend payment, after cancelling the payout last year due to the pandemic, with 3 cents a share.

The lender said it expects impairment costs to remain low through the end of the year and guided for similar levels of income in 2021 versus last year.

Write to Yifan Wang at [email protected]

This article was published by Dow Jones Newswires

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