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Philippine bank assets up 70% to P20 trillion in 2020
Total resources of Philippine banks hit a record high of P20 trillion last year, P1.29 trillion higher than the P18.71 trillion recorded in 2019.
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Philippine bank assets up 70% to P20 trillion in 2020

Lawrence Agcaoili (The Philippine Star) - March 2, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The domestic banking sector managed to post a 6.9 percent growth in total assets despite the uncertainties brought about by the pandemic, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

Total resources of Philippine banks hit a record high of P20 trillion last year, P1.29 trillion higher than the P18.71 trillion recorded in 2019.

The total assets of big banks or universal and commercial banks grew by 7.5 percent to P18.51 trillion in 2020 from P17.22 trillion in 2019, while that of mid-sized banks or thrift banks slipped by about one percent to P1.19 trillion in 2020 from P1.2 trillion in 2019.

The total resources of small or rural bank inched up by 3.4 percent to P301 billion as of end-September last year from P291 billion in the same period in 2019.

The industry’s total resources continued to grow impressively, accounting for more than 90 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

Major players in the local banking sector are BDO Unibank, Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., Bank of the Philippine Islands, Philippine National Bank, China Bank, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., Union Bank and Security Bank.

State-run Land Bank of the Philippines and Development Bank of the Philippines are also part of the country’s 10 largest lenders in terms of assets last year.

BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno earlier said the country’s banking system is expected to withstand the impact of the pandemic. “While the full impact of the pandemic is still unfolding, the good news is that the Philippine banking system is expected to withstand the impact of the pandemic. The financial system is in a strong position to both weather the significant economic effect caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and support the country’s economic recovery,” he said.

The BSP has implemented reforms over the years, reflecting the lessons learned in the Asian financial crisis in 1997.

Based on the results of the latest Banking Sector Outlook Survey (BSOS), 69 percent of the respondent banks projected a stable banking system as they expect a 10 to 15 percent growth in the industry’s loan portfolio over the next two years.

Bankers are also looking at double-digit growths in net income, as well as deposits for the next two years.

Earnings of Philippine banks slumped to a four-year low after declining by 33 percent to P154.96 billion last year from a record high of P230.67 billion in 2019 as provision for potential loan losses almost quadrupled to P210.89 billion from P52.89 billion.

BANGKO SENTRAL NG PILIPINAS
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