UBA, Zenith, Wema, and Six Others Report N3.9tn Earnings in Six Months

Daud Olatunji


In a financial report released today, it has been revealed that eight prominent deposit banks in Nigeria, including United Bank for Africa (UBA), Zenith Bank, First Bank, Wema Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank (GTCO), Fidelity Bank, Sterling Bank, and FCMB, collectively amassed an astounding N3.9 trillion in gross earnings during the first half of the 2023 financial year.

These figures were sourced from the financial statements of the aforementioned banks, which were made accessible on the Nigerian Exchange Limited’s website. Zenith Bank emerged as one of the standout performers, experiencing an impressive 139 percent growth in gross earnings, soaring from N404.8 billion in H1 2022 to an astonishing N967.3 billion in H1 2023.

Furthermore, the bank’s profit after tax saw a remarkable improvement, surging by 161.84 percent to N291.7 billion by the end of June 2023.

GTCO also demonstrated substantial growth, with its gross earnings skyrocketing to N672.603 billion from N364.306 billion, marking an 85 percent increase.

In their audited consolidated and separate financial statements for the first half of the year, filed both on the Nigerian Exchange Group and London Stock Exchange, the bank reported a profit after tax of N280.482 billion in H1 2023, compared to N77.557 billion in the corresponding period of 2022.

United Bank for Africa reported a remarkable 164 percent increase in gross earnings, climbing to N981.78 billion as of June 2023 from N372.36 billion in June 2022. The bank’s audited financial report disclosed a profit after tax of N378.24 billion, representing an astounding 437.8 percent increase over H1 2022.

First Bank, Nigeria’s oldest bank, witnessed an 82.8 percent surge in gross earnings to N656.6 billion in H1 2023, compared to N359.2 billion in the same period of 2022. The bank’s profit after tax also witnessed significant growth, rising to N174.9 billion in H1 2023 from N53.3 billion a year earlier.

Other leading banks that reported noteworthy growth in gross earnings during the first half of the year included Wema Bank (N89.09 billion), Fidelity Bank (N247.1 billion), Sterling Holding (N99.06 billion), and FCMB (N238.2 billion). In total, these eight banks collectively generated a staggering N3.9 trillion in the first six months of the year.

A closer examination of the banks’ financial statements revealed that the robust performance in the first half of the year was largely attributed to the devaluation of the naira, which followed the Central Bank of Nigeria’s decision to float the local currency.

 For instance, Zenith Bank’s interest income surged by 72 percent, rising from N241.7 billion in H1 2022 to N415.4 billion. Additionally, trading gains increased by 21 percent to N103 billion during the same period.

The growth in interest income was attributed to the impact of both the growth and repricing of risk assets. Zenith Bank attributed the significant improvement in non-interest income to the liberalization of the foreign exchange market during the period, which led to substantial revaluation gains.

These impressive financial results underscore the resilience and adaptability of Nigeria’s banking sector in the face of economic challenges and currency fluctuations, reaffirming the strength and stability of the country’s financial institutions.

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