DOHA Jan 20 Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB), the Gulf state's second-largest lender by market value, said fourth-quarter net profit fell more than 50 percent due to higher provisions.
The bank made a net profit of 110 million riyals ($30.2 million) in the three months to December 31, according to Reuters calculations, compared with 265 million riyals in the same period a year ago and widely missing analysts' average forecast of 328.58 million riyals. [ID: nL5E9C4A21]
It reported an annual net profit of 1.24 billion riyals, a company statement said.
The bank proposed a 37.5 percent dividend, the statement said.
It allocated 502 million riyals toward provisions in 2012, compared to 194 million in 2011, it said.
The lender returned to global debt markets last October after a two-year absence with a $750 million Islamic bond sale, tapping into strong liquidity for regional issuers. It priced a five-year sukuk at a profit rate of 2.5 percent, and a spread of 175 basis points over midswaps, tighter than the earlier guidance after strong investor interest.
Fourth-quarter profit at Qatar National Bank (QNB), the first major regional lender to report earnings and considered a bellwether for the sector's performance, was flat at 2.1 billion riyals earlier this month.
Banks in Qatar are expected to benefit as the country, one of the world's fastest growing economies, spends billions of dollars on infrastructure as it prepares to host football's 2022 World Cup.
($1 = 3.6404 Qatar riyals) (Reporting By Regan Doherty, Editing by Louise Heavens)