July 28, 2018 / 11:16 AM / 5 months ago

UPDATE 1-Jordan's Arab Bank group says H1 net profit rise 5 pct to $436 mln

(Adds details and background)

AMMAN, July 28 (Reuters) - Jordan’s largest lender, Arab Bank Group, reported a five percent rise in first-half net profit to $436 million from $415 million a year earlier driven by steady growth in core banking services.

A statement released on Saturday by the bank, one of the Middle East’s major financial institutions, said net operating income rose 13 percent to $668.5 million during the same period.

Total loans rose three percent to $25.5 billion while deposits fell to $33 billion compared with $33.8 billion at the end of last year.

Chairman Sabih al Masri said the bank’s diversified operations and geographic spread allowed the bank to be able to “adjust to a challenging operating environment”.

Arab Bank operates in 30 countries on five continents, and owns 40 percent of Saudi Arabia’s Arab National Bank ANB .

CEO Nemeh Sabbagh said liquidity continued to be robust with a loan-to-deposit ratio of 71.6 percent. The bank’s provisions coverage ratio for non-performing loans stood in excess of 100 percent. (Reporting by Suleiman Al-Khalidi, Editing by William Maclean)

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