DUBAI Jan 27 Emirates NBD (ENBD), Dubai's largest lender, on Monday said its fourth-quarter net profit rose 8 percent, missing analysts' forecasts as the amount set aside by the lender to meet loan losses soared.
The lender, 55.6-percent owned by state fund Investment Corp of Dubai, made a net profit of 673 million dirhams ($183.2 million) in the three months to Dec. 31, a statement from the bank said, compared with 626 million dirhams in the same period last year.
An average of five analysts polled by Reuters forecast a net profit of 705.9 million dirhams for the fourth quarter.
The net profit came despite a 40 percent year-on-year jump in impairment allowances, which rose to 1.31 billion dirhams in the fourth quarter.
Full-year net profit for 2013 was 3.26 billion dirhams, up 27 percent from the 2.55 billion dirhams recorded in the previous year.
ENBD said it would pay a cash dividend of 0.25 dirhams per share for 2013. This is the same as the 2012 dividend. ($1 = 3.6730 UAE dirhams) (Reporting by David French; Editing by Dinesh Nair)