Bloomberg News

Samba Net Rises 3 Percent, Beating Analysts’ Estimates

October 15, 2011

(Updates with earnings details in fourth paragraph.)

Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Samba Financial Group, Saudi Arabia’s second-largest publicly traded company by market value, said third-quarter profit rose 3 percent as income from investment increased.

Net income rose to 1.135 billion riyals ($303 million) from 1.103 billion riyals a year earlier, the Riyadh-based lender said in a statement to the Saudi bourse today. That beat the mean estimate of six analysts who forecast a profit of 1.12 billion riyals, according to data on Bloomberg.

Higher lending and lower provisions has helped improve earnings at Saudi banks as growth in the world’s largest oil producer accelerates, spurred by a $130 billion spending plan announced by King Abdullah. Al Rajhi Bank, the kingdom’s largest lender, Saudi British Bank, Banque Saudi Fransi and Saudi Hollandi Bank reported higher quarterly profit last week.

“The reason for increasing the profit of the third quarter by 2.9 percent compared with the corresponding quarter last year is the increasing income from investments,” the statement said. Total investments climbed 2.5 percent to 66 billion riyals.

Samba said outstanding loans rose 8.5 percent from a year earlier to 88.3 billion riyals, while its customer deposits advanced 2.3 percent to 134.9 billion riyals.

Samba’s shares rose 0.7 percent to 44.50 riyals in Riyadh today before the earnings were released, giving the bank a market value of 40 billion riyals.

--Editor: Kim McLaughlin

To contact the reporter on this story: Mourad Haroutunian in Riyadh at mharoutunian@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net


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