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 Net earnings of GCC banks increased 8.8 per cent year-on-year (yoy) to $5.8 billion (Dh21.286 billion) in Q2 2015, mostly due to higher net interest income and a drop in provisions.

Net profit of banks in the Kuwait increased the most (15.1 per cent YoY), followed by UAE (13.1 per cent YoY), Qatar (10.7 per cent YoY); profit growth of KSA based banks remained muted at 3.7 per cent YoY.

However, on quarter-on-quarter (qoq) basis, net profit of the GCC aggregate rose 3.1 per cent , with Qatar leading the gain (8.7 per cent QoQ), followed by KSA (6.5 per cent QoQ). Sequential profit growth of UAE banks remained muted (0.4 per cent QoQ) but that of Kuwait witnessed a 13.5 per cent drop on account of one-offs that NBK saw in Q1 2015. QoQ growth in profit can be ascribed to higher operating income and lower operational expenditures.

Among UAE based banks, Emirates NBD reported 25.9 per cent YoY growth in net profit due to lower provision expenses and higher net interest income. The bank’s fee income growth was stable during the quarter, which added to the bottom-line.

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank reported 21.4 per cent YoY growth in its bottom-line during Q2 2015 mainly due to a huge decline in provision expenses. The bank recorded a massive drop in its provisions due to improvement in asset quality.

Union National Bank reported 10.2 per cent YoY growth in its bottom-line in 2Q15 due to a significant increase in net and non-interest income. However, higher provisions partially dented the bottom-line growth.

Total assets of GCC banks expanded 9.8 per cent YoY to $1.2trn in Q2 2015.

Qatar-based banks witnessed the strongest growth in total assets (11.9 per cent YoY), followed by banks in UAE (11 per cent YoY), Kuwait (8.2 per cent YoY) and KSA (8.1 per cent YoY). Expansion in asset base was supported by growth in loan book. However, on a QoQ basis, asset growth was sluggish due to marginal increase in loans.
 
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