Kuwaiti banks demonstrate resilience amid challenges

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KUWAIT CITY, April 6: The financial performance of Kuwaiti banks in recent years, particularly during the period from 2019 to 2023, demonstrates their resilience and ability to navigate through challenges, including the COVID- 19 pandemic, reports Al-Anba daily. Despite facing economic uncertainties and the need to reserve provisions for credit losses, Kuwaiti banks have maintained solid profitability and continued to reward their shareholders with cash dividends.

Here’s a summary of the key points highlighted in the analysis:
Overall Performance — Kuwaiti banks achieved consolidated net profits of 5 billion dinars during the five years from 2019 to 2023. Despite challenges posed by the pandemic, they maintained profitability and distributed cash dividends totaling 2.55 billion dinars, equivalent to a cash distribution ratio of 50% of net profits. Cash Distribution Ratio — The cash distribution ratio averaged 50% over the last five years, indicating a consistent commitment to returning value to shareholders through dividends. National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) — NBK emerged as the top performer among local banks, recording the highest profits of 2.08 billion dinars during the five years. It distributed approximately 54% of its net profits as cash dividends, totaling 1.12 billion dinars.

Net profits Kuwait Finance House (KFH) – The KFH ranked second in terms of net profits, achieving 1.59 billion dinars over five years. It distributed cash dividends equivalent to 51% of net profits, totaling 806.5 million dinars. In 2023, KFH’s cash distributions reached a record high of 292 million dinars, representing 50% of that year’s net profits. Boubyan Bank – The Boubyan Bank secured the third position in net profits with a total of 284 million dinars over five years. It distributed cash dividends worth 96 million dinars, equivalent to 34% of net profits during that period. In 2023, its cash distributions increased to 31.7 million dinars, representing 39% of the year’s net profits.

Gulf Bank – The Gulf Bank achieved the fourth-highest net profits of 267.6 million dinars over five years. It distributed cash dividends totaling 143.4 million dinars, equivalent to 54% of net profits during that period. In 2023, Gulf Bank’s cash distributions peaked at 43.5 million dinars, constituting 61% of the year’s net profits.

Burgan Bank – The Burgan Bank distributed cash dividends worth 107 million dinars over the last five years against net profits of 259.4 million dinars resulting in a dividend-to-net profits ratio of 41%. Overall, Kuwaiti banks have demonstrated robust financial performance, balancing profitability with shareholder returns, despite facing various challenges. The distribution of cash dividends underscores their commitment to creating value for shareholders and maintaining investor confidence in the banking sector.

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