Doha Bank Q4 profit falls 55% due to provisions

Doha Bank posted a 54.7 per cent drop in fourth-quarter profit to 112.7 million riyals (Dh113m) as it booked losses on investments and derivatives and made provisions for bad loans.

The Qatari lender said full-year profit for 2008 rose to 946.5m riyals, or 5.67 riyals per share, compared with 926.46m riyals, or 6.18 riyals per share, a year earlier.

It did not give quarterly data, which Reuters calculated based on previous financial statements showing it earned 833.83m riyals in the first nine months of 2008 and 248.95m riyals in the fourth quarter of 2007.

Doha Bank's profits were weighed by a 64.95m riyal loss for the year on derivatives and 131.54m riyals of losses on financial investments, according to financial statements posted on the Doha bourse website.

The bank also booked 56.93m riyals of provisions for impairment of loans and advances in 2008.

Banks across the oil-exporting region have been posting weaker fourth-quarter profits as write-downs rise as the region suffers the fallout of a global financial crisis.

Doha Bank's third-quarter profit had grown 18 per cent and its second-quarter profit grew almost 28 per cent.

The economy of Qatar, the world's biggest exporter of LNG, is likely to grow about 10 per cent in real terms this year, said its minister of state for energy and industry affairs. Doha Bank said its board was recommending cash dividends for 2008 of 50 per cent of the paid up capital, or five riyals per share.

 

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