October 9, 2019 / 11:32 AM / a month ago

Qatar National Bank nine-month net profit rises 4% to 11.2 billion riyals

(Reuters) - Qatar National Bank (QNB) QNBK.QA, the Gulf’s largest lender, reported a 4% increase in nine-month net profit to 11.2 billion riyals ($3.1 billion) on Wednesday, broadly in line with analyst estimates.

Third-quarter net profit was 3.8 billion riyals in the three months to Sept. 30 according to a Reuters calculation, up from 3.72 billion riyals in the corresponding period of 2018.

EFG Hermes had forecast a third-quarter net profit of 3.763 billion riyals, while SICO Bahrain estimated net profit of 3.9 billion riyals.

QNB, which is 50% owned by Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund Qatar Investment Authority, said in a statement its total assets had grown 7% from a year earlier, driven by an 8% increase in loans and advances.

The bank said the loans and advances were largely funded by a 7% increase in customer deposits from a year earlier.

Qatar has largely shrugged off attempts by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt to put pressure on its economy after they cut diplomatic and transport ties in 2017.

Qatari banks have since widened their sources of funding, opting for private placements in different currencies, alongside more traditional public bond issues.

QNB received regulatory approval for its first Hong Kong branch in September, part of plans to boost international operations.

Reporting by Eric Knecht ; Editing by Saeed Azhar and Kirsten Donovan

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