In a remarkable financial resurgence, six of Nigeria’s leading banks have defied economic challenges to achieve a staggering 214% increase in their collective profits, totaling N2.06tn in the third quarter of 2023.
According to a report, the astounding growth was compared to N656.15bn recorded during the same period in 2022, illustrating the robust performance of these financial institutions despite the economic headwinds they faced.
The six banks driving this financial revolution are Access Holdings Plc, Zenith Bank International, United Bank for Africa, Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc, FBN Holdings, and Stanbic IBTC Holdings.
Notably, each of these banks experienced triple-digit profit growth, with Zenith Bank leading the pack, achieving an astonishing 412.55% increase in its total comprehensive income, reaching N647.74bn from N126.37bn. UBA followed closely with a 287.18% profit increase, reaching N109.25bn.
Other impressive profit increases included GTCO, which saw an 181.87% rise in its profit to N367.41bn, FBN Holdings with a remarkable 159% increase to N236.50bn, and Stanbic IBTC, which witnessed a 97.96% profit boost to N109.25bn.
The smallest percentage increase among these banks was recorded by Access Holdings, which still achieved an impressive 82.92% growth, reaching N250.44bn from N136.91bn.
The resounding success of these banks can be attributed in part to the harmonization of the currency market segments by the Central Bank of Nigeria in mid-June.
This policy change had a significant impact on the value of banks’ foreign currency assets and liabilities, prompting the CBN to prohibit commercial banks from using their foreign exchange revaluation gains for dividends and operational expenses.
Furthermore, the banks’ assets appreciated by an impressive 43.57%, increasing to N83.55tn from N58.19tn by the end of the 2022 financial year. This rise was largely driven by an expansion in their loan books.
Reacting to this remarkable growth in the banking sector, Professor Segun Ajibola, a former President and Chairman of the Council at the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, emphasized the vital role that banks play in boosting the country’s economy.
While the immediate effects of their lending activities may not be immediately apparent, their contributions are expected to yield significant results in the future.
In summary, Nigeria’s top banks have defied economic challenges, posting record-breaking profits, and contributing to the country’s financial resilience.
The sector’s performance stands as a testament to the strength and resilience of the Nigerian banking industry in the face of adversity.
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