Philippine National Bank (PSE: PNB) registered total revenues of P23.6 billion for the first half of 2020, 24 percent higher compared to its revenues for the same period last year, driven by continuous growth in lending and trading activities despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Net profit before provisions for impairment and taxes improved by 70 percent year-on-year.

PNB’s net interest income increased by 19 percent to P17.5 billion from year-ago level of P14.7 billion, on account of reduced high-cost deposits. PNB sustained its growth in loan receivables, which now stand at P602.6 billion, better by 1 percent from prior year. Deposit liabilities also expanded to P790.7 billion as of end-June 2020, a 2 percent increase from year-ago balance.

As favorable market opportunities continue during the second quarter of 2020, PNB recorded further improvements in trading securities gains, which now amounted to P3.2 billion, up by 78 percent year-on-year.

Operating expenses, excluding provisions for impairment and credit losses, totaled P13.4 billion, up 2 percent as compared to the same period last year, as robust revenue streams translated to higher business taxes and other business-related expenses.

PNB continued to consider the evolving economic impact of the uncertainties brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the Bank booked additional impairment provisions of P5.1 billion during the second quarter of the year, bringing the total provisions to-date to P8.4 billion. After provisions, net income for the first half of the year amounted to P1.4 billion, down from almost P4.0 billion for the same period last year. PNB is proactively implementing measures to mitigate any risks to its portfolio brought about by the pandemic and to further strengthen its security positions.

“PNB’s performance for the first half of 2020 demonstrates the depth and resiliency of its core business as the bank sustained its growth momentum, built on a solid business franchise with continued and strong support from its customers. As the uncertainties from the pandemic persist, we will continue to take a pragmatic approach on loan provisioning to proactively protect the bank’s balance sheet against potential credit losses”, PNB President and CEO Wick Veloso said. “For the rest of the year, we will continue to focus on tactical strategies ensuring uninterrupted service to its customers, strengthening its liquidity and capital positions and enabling the bank to actively participate in reviving the economy.” he added.

Total capital increased by 13 percent from last year’s level of P136.0 billion to P154.3 billion, as a result of PNB’s offering of stock rights in July 2019. As of end-June 2020, PNB’s CAR and Common Equity Tier 1 Ratio stood at 15.86 percent and 14.99 percent, respectively, well above the minimum regulatory requirement of 10 percent.

During the nationwide Enhanced Community Quarantine in April and May, an average of 51% of PNB’s branch network was open on rotational basis and with shortened banking hours (from 9am to 1pm). To date, almost all of the branches of PNB are open to serve clients with banking hours back to normal. The Bank continues to deploy additional mobile automated teller machines that serve as “Bank on Wheels”, which enables customers to perform cash withdrawals, bills payments and fund transfers. This service is available daily, including weekends, from 7am to 6pm in key locations in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.