DUBAI Jan 31 Emirates NBD, Dubai's largest bank by market value, on Thursday said its fourth-quarter net profit more than tripled on the back of lower impairments, beating analysts' forecasts.
The lender, 55.6-percent owned by state fund Investment Corporation of Dubai, made a net profit of 625 million dirhams ($170.16 million) in the three months to December 31, a statement from the bank said, compared with 152 million dirhams in the same period last year.
An average of five analysts polled by Reuters forecast a net profit of 484 million dirhams for the quarter.
Full-year profit for 2012 also rose, reaching 2.55 billion dirhams against 2.48 billion dirhams in 2011.
Provisions for the Q4 period stood at 940 million dirhams, down from the 1.06 billion dirhams the bank recorded in the same three months of 2011.
This took impairment allowances for 2012 to 4 billion dirhams, below the 4.98 billion dirhams the bank set aside for bad loans in the previous year.
ENBD reported a profit from associates of 37 million dirhams for the fourth quarter of 2012, versus a loss of 227 million dirhams in the same period of 2011. ($1 = 3.6730 UAE dirhams) (Reporting by David French; Editing by Dinesh Nair)