Bank Hapoalim (TASE: POLI) today published its results for the first quarter of 2018. Net profit was down 18% to NIS 628 million, while return on equity amounted to 7.2%, compared with 9.2% in the first quarter of 2017.
The business investigation against Bank Hapoalim in the US is also reflected in the first quarter of 2018; the bank made an additional NIS 60 million ($17 million) provision in its reports for this investigation. Bank Hapoalim's provisions to date for the investigation total $365 million (NIS 1.28 billion). The bank states that if this provision is excluded, its quarter profit would be NIS 688 million and its return on equity would be 7.9%
Bank Hapoalim reported a 2% increase in its credit portfolio and 8% growth in its financing profit from current activity to NIS 2.384 billion.
Bank Hapoalim's net credit losses reached NIS 250 million, 0.35% of its total average credit to the public, compared with NIS 107 million, 0.16% of total average credit to the public, in the corresponding quarter last year.
Bank Hapoalim attributes the increase in these expenses primarily to "a rise in business credit in the quarter." Credit to the business sector was up 5% to NIS 68.6 billion in the first quarter.
Simultaneously with its report, Bank Hapoalim announced the distribution of a NIS 251 million dividend to its shareholders.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on May 24, 2018
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