Ghana’s biggest bank, Ecobank Ghana registered a year-on-year profit of 33% in the first quarter of this year to GH¢168.2 million, its unaudited first quarter financial statement has revealed.

This was as a result of significant growth in interest income, largely investments in government securities, despite the impact of covid-19 pandemic on the Ghanaian economy.

Net interest income surged from GH¢287.5 million in March 2020 to GH¢364.8 million in March 2021, whilst net fees and commissions also went up to GH¢58.5 million in the first three months of this year, from GH¢54 million the same period a year ago.

Consequently, Return on Average Equity grew by 31%, while Return on Average Assets was estimated at 5%.

From the financial statement, the earnings could have been more if not for covid-19, which compel the bank to slowdown lending activities in the first three months of this year.

The strong growth in earnings resulted in an increased earnings per share of GH¢2.09 in March 2021, compared with GH¢1.47 a year ago. This means shareholders of the bank will be smiling with additional 62 pesewas gains.

The balance sheet size still stood a little over GH¢29 billion, similar to what was recorded in December 2020. Customer deposits however grew by 16% to hit GH¢11.6 billion at the end of March 2021.

In terms of stability of the bank, non-performing loans stood at 12%, lower than the industry average of 15.5%.

Capital Adequacy Ratio-a measurement of a bank’s available capital to its Risk Weighted Assets, was way above the industry average at 19.4% in December 2020, signifying a stronger bank.

Overall, Ecobank is highly liquid as liquidity ratio stood at 96.44%.

Key Ratios

  
Return on Average Assets5%
Return on Average Equity31%
Non Funded Income to Total Income24%

Financial Highlights March 2021 – March 2020

 20212020 
Profit before Tax240.5m168.8m33%
Total Assets15.8bn13.2bn18%
Deposits11.66bn9.95bn16%