Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (Metrobank) posted a net profit of 8.0 billion pesos in the first quarter of 2022. Metrobank’s strong performance is attributed to stable net interest income supported by loan recovery, a slight increase non-interest income and incremental cost growth. Asset quality remains healthy, leading to a further decline in provisions. These positive factors improved the Bank’s average return on equity (ROE) to 10%.
“We are encouraged by the sustained recovery in economic activity as Metrobank stands ready to support our customers with their financing plans and investment needs,” Metrobank Chairman Fabian S. Dee said. “The strategies we have put in place should enable the Bank to achieve sustainable growth alongside the expansion of the national economy,” added President Dee.
Gross loans rose 5% year-on-year to P1.3 trillion, driven by a solid 10% expansion in business loans and an 8% increase in credit card receivables. Loan growth was supported by a 17% jump in total deposits to P2 trillion. CASA deposits increased by 10%, resulting in a CASA ratio of 71%. The sustained increase in low-cost CASAs has further reduced the cost of financing. As a result, net interest income reached 19.3 billion pesos.
Meanwhile, non-interest revenue rose 5%, driven by a 7% rise in service charges and commissions. Even with market volatility in the first quarter, the Bank was able to generate 2.3 billion pesos in trading and foreign exchange gains.
Operating costs remained under control, increasing just 1% to 14.9 billion pesos, reflecting continued efforts to improve productivity and operational efficiency. Thus, the cost/income ratio improved to 54.1% against 54.6% in the same period last year.
Growth did not come at the expense of quality, with non-performing loans (NPLs) falling 5% to 27.0 billion pesos. The resulting NPL ratio improved to 2.2% from 2.4% last year, while NPL coverage remained strong at 179%. Strong asset quality allowed the Bank to further reduce its provisions.
Metrobank is the second largest private universal bank in the country with consolidated assets of 2.6 trillion pesos and total equity of 303.8 billion pesos. The Bank’s balance sheet remains strong with a capital adequacy ratio (CAR) of 18.5% and Common Equity Tier 1 (CET 1) capital of 17.6%, both well above the regulatory minimum .
A testament to the Bank’s goal of realizing its full potential across all of its business segments, Metrobank Private Wealth was named the Best Domestic Private Bank in the Philippines at the Asiamoney 2022 Private Banking Awards. “Our goal at Metrobank Private Wealth is to be the most trusted financial advisor to our clients and to develop a relationship with them that will span generations,” said Lizette Perez, Senior Vice President and Head of Metrobank Private. wealth.
In 2021, the Bank received Best Multi-Product Financing Deal and Best Syndicated Loan Deal at the Asset Triple-A Awards. In recognition of its overall fortress balance sheet and resilience, Metrobank has been hailed as the strongest bank in the Philippines by Asian Banker and the best domestic bank in the Philippines by Asiamoney.