Korean commercial banks reported solid growth in their net profits last year on the back of a surge in interest income, data showed on Feb. 19.
The combined net earnings of the country’s five major lenders -- KB Kookmin, Shinhan, Woori, KEB Hana, and NH NongHyup Bank -- came to 9.71 trillion won (US$8.62 billion) on a consolidated basis last year, up 20.6 percent from a year earlier, according to their regulatory filings.
Shinhan Bank logged 2.28 trillion won in net earnings in 2018, claiming the top position among the major lenders. The 2018 profit marked a 33.2 percent on-year increase.
Kookmin Bank came next by reporting 2.22 trillion won of net profit, up 2.3 percent from the previous year. That of Hana Bank inched down 0.5 percent on-year to stand at 2.09 trillion won.
Woori Bank recorded 1.88 trillion won of net income last year, up 34.5 percent from the previous year, and the net income of NongHyup Bank spiked 87.5 percent on-year to 1.22 trillion won in 2018.
The strong performance is attributable to a marked growth in interest income, which went up 10.5 percent to 27.28 trillion won.
But their aggregate non-interest income tumbled 19.6 percent on-year to 3.66 trillion won, according to the data.
By Ram Garikipati and newswires (firstname.lastname@example.org)