Fri, May 05, 2006 - Page 11 News List

Fubon Financial figures hit by card debts, bad loans

By Amber Chung  /  STAFF REPORTER , WITH BLOOMBERG

Fubon Financial Holding Co (富邦金控), Taiwan's fourth-largest financial group by assets, reported weakening first-quarter profits on rising bad loan provisions, caused by defaulted loans on credit and cash cards, the company announced yesterday.

After-tax net income totaled NT$3.2 billion (US$101 million), or NT$0.42 per share, in the January-March period, the company said in its quarterly statement.

The first-quarter net income of NT$3.2 billion represents a 24.7 percent decline from NT$4.26 billion in the first quarter of last year.

Fubon Financial attributed the fall to an additional NT$2 billion provision for bad loans made by its banking unit Taipei Fubon Bank (台北富邦銀行), the statement said.

Overall, the financial service provider increased its bad loan provisions to NT$7.86 billion in the first quarter, the company said. Fubon Financial aims to spread its provisions expenses over the remaining months of the year to cope with the growing debt burden from credit cards, chief financial officer Cheng Hui-ming (鄭慧明) said last month.

Fubon said on March 31 that it had revised last year's profit to NT$10.6 billion, down from a previously reported NT$14.3 billion, after Taipei Fubon Bank posted an additional NT$5 billion in provisions for bad loans. The revised figures show Fubon Financial lost NT$2 billion in the fourth quarter, against a profit of NT$1.7 billion reported on March 2.

Meanwhile, another subsidiary, Fubon Securities (富邦證券), saw profits more than double to NT$738 million from a year earlier thanks to the recent stock market boom, the statement said.

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