EQS Group-News: Nordea Bank Abp
/ Key word(s): Half Year Results
Half-year results 2021
Nordea Bank Abp
Summary of the quarter:
Continued strong growth in customer business volumes across Nordics. Nordea drove high levels of business activity and gained market shares across the Nordics. Mortgage volumes continued to grow significantly, increasing by 6%, year on year, and SME lending increased by 8%. Assets under management increased by 24% to an all-time high of EUR 387bn, driven by strong performance and continued solid net inflows, especially into retail funds and Private Banking.
Underlying costs unchanged - outlook updated due to significantly higher business activity. Total costs excluding resolution fees increased by 9% due to the inclusion of Nordea Finance Equipment, higher variable pay linked to strong performance and exchange rate effects. Adjusted for these items, costs were unchanged. Given this, costs for 2021 are now expected to be around EUR 4.6bn (previously below EUR 4.6bn).
Strong credit quality with net loan loss reversals. Net loan losses and similar net result amounted to net reversals of EUR 51m or 6bp in the quarter, compared with a 85bp charge in the same quarter last year. Realised net loan losses remained at low levels. Net loan losses in 2021 are expected to be significantly below the 2020 level.
Cost-to-income ratio and profitability improving. Nordea's cost-to-income ratio improved to 49% from 52% a year ago, supported by strong income growth and improved cost efficiency. Return on equity increased to 11.4%, despite the very high equity base arising from undistributed dividends and excess capital. Earnings per share increased to EUR 0.25 from EUR 0.06.
Strong capital generation - capital position among best in Europe. Nordea's CET1 ratio increased to 18.0% from 15.8% a year ago, even after the deduction of the unpaid dividends for 2019-20 and the accrued 2021 dividend. As previously disclosed, Nordea is ready to distribute the unpaid 2019-20 dividends (totalling EUR 0.72 per share) in October, after the current restrictions are repealed. Nordea also plans to start share buy-backs and has commenced the application process.
On track to meet 2022 financial targets. Nordea continues to focus on its three key priorities: to create great customer experiences, drive income growth initiatives and optimise operational efficiency. Nordea is progressing well towards consistent delivery of its financial targets: a cost-to-income ratio of 50% and a return on equity above 10%.
(For further viewpoints, see the CEO comment on page 2. For definitions, see page 54 in the Half-Year Financial Report 2021)
Group quarterly results and key ratios, Q2 2021
We are making good progress in developing our omnichannel banking model. The mobile bank app now has more than one billion logins annually and we are continually adding new functionalities. For example, customers can apply for a mortgage via the app and receive a digital loan promise within minutes. They can also sign mortgage agreements digitally and switch between variable and fixed interest periods with a few taps. Savings product sales through digital channels now correspond to 65% of all retail savings. On the corporate side, we have rolled out our new netbank to over 50% of customers and will consistently add new functionalities going forward.
In the second quarter we continued to grow business and customer activity significantly, and further increased market shares across the Nordics. Mortgage volumes increased by 6%, year on year, and lending to small and medium-sized enterprises increased by 8%. Assets under management (AuM) increased by 24% to EUR 387bn, supported by quarterly net inflows of EUR 1.8bn into retail funds and EUR 2.0bn into Private Banking, and solid market performance.
These positive developments led to strong quarterly results. Operating profit increased to EUR 1,338m from EUR 306m in the same period last year due to strong income growth, firm cost control and a significant decrease in net loan losses. Return on equity increased to 11.4%. Income grew by 16%, year on year, and net interest income increased by 13%, the highest growth rate in ten years. Net fee and commission income increased by 30%, mainly driven by higher savings and advisory commission income. Net fair value result was solid, supported by high levels of customer activity and valuation gains.
We remain focused on continuously growing revenues faster than costs. In the second quarter we made further progress, improving our cost-to-income ratio to 49% from 52% a year ago. The significantly higher business activity in the quarter led to higher revenues and profits, but also somewhat higher operating costs, including provisions for variable pay. Our full-year 2021 cost outlook is therefore now around, rather than below, EUR 4.6bn. Our prime focus is, and will remain, not on absolute costs but on costs relative to income.
Our credit quality remained strong in the second quarter. Realised loan losses were low and we recorded EUR 51m in net loan loss reversals. We expect net loan losses in 2021 to be significantly below the 2020 level. However, we have kept our management judgement buffer largely unchanged while the full impact of the pandemic on Nordea's customers remains uncertain.
We continue to implement our new sustainability strategy across the bank. Customer demand for sustainable banking services remains very strong. Drawing on our expertise as a leading bank for sustainability, we are advising and supporting our customers in transitioning to a more sustainable future. In particular, we are working with customers in sectors especially vulnerable to climate-related risks, developing detailed and time-bound transition plans.
All of our business areas are delivering strong performances. In Personal Banking we had high levels of business activity. Mortgage volumes continued to increase and market shares increased in all countries. Savings income grew by 24% due to very high customer activity and retail fund net inflows. The cost-to-income ratio improved to 49% from 54%.
In Business Banking customer lending volumes grew by 8%, year on year. Business activity was high, with particularly strong momentum in Norway and Sweden. We continued to develop our sustainability offering. Overall, our sustainability-linked lending grew by 20% in the second quarter of 2021. The ESG part of our portfolio now amounts to EUR 3bn. The cost-to-income ratio improved to 44% from 50%, its best level to date.
In Large Corporates & Institutions we are progressing well towards creating a more focused and profitable business area. We continued to see very high levels of customer activity across our focus segments, especially in our brokerage and advisory business. Return on capital at risk was 16%.
In Asset & Wealth Management customer activity remained at very high levels - especially in our internal channels. Net inflows into retail funds were strong, particularly in Denmark and Finland. In Private Banking we gained new customers and saw record-high net inflows, which amounted to EUR 2.0bn in the quarter. Interest in sustainability products was high among all customer groups. The cost-to-income ratio improved to 41% from 57%.
Capital generation continues to be strong. Our Group CET1 ratio increased by 220bp, year on year, to 18.0%. We have a buffer of 7.8 percentage points above the current regulatory requirement, even after having deducted the 2019-20 dividends and the accrued 2021 dividend, making us one of the best capitalised banks in Europe.
We remain committed to our capital and dividend policy, which includes pursuing an efficient capital structure. The Board is ready to decide on a dividend payment of a maximum of EUR 0.72 per share, to be distributed in October, after the current restrictions are repealed. Regarding share buy-backs, we intend to start the programme in the fourth quarter, and have commenced the application process.
Nordea is entering the post-pandemic environment in a position of strength. We are well on track to meet our financial targets for 2022. We are delivering smoother and better customer experiences, developing advanced digital capabilities, and keeping sustainability at the centre of our customer offerings and operations.
Our focus remains on our three key priorities: to create great customer experiences, drive income growth initiatives and optimise operational efficiency. We are determined to continuously improve our performance and do things a bit better every single day. That is our way forward. For the benefit of our customers, business, shareholders and society at large."
Business volumes, key items1
Ratios and key figures2
1. End of period.
Key priorities to meet 2022 financial targets
Financial targets for 2022
- a return on equity above 10%
- a cost-to-income ratio of 50%
Costs (operating expenses)
Previous: Total costs for 2021 are expected to be below EUR 4.6bn.
The entire report can be found on the below link on our website.
For further information:
The information provided in this stock exchange release was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact persons set out above, at 07.30 EET (06.30 CET) on 21 July 2021.
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End of Media Release
|Company:||Nordea Bank Abp|
|105 71 Stockholm|
|Listed:||SIX Swiss Exchange|
|EQS News ID:||1220512|
|End of News||EQS Group News Service|