RETAIL BANKING | Staff Reporter, Philippines

Philippine bank assets up 11.31% to $300.3b in Q1

Stable savings and demand deposits buoyed healthy capitalisation levels.

The combined assets of the Philippine banking system rose 11.31% YoY to $300.30b (PHP15.71t) in Q1, according to a report from the country’s central bank, amidst healthy levels of savings and demand deposits.

In a breakdown, the combined assets of the country’s largest banks hit $272.20b (PHP14.24t), representing an 11.89% increase. On the other hand, the resources held by the country's thrift banks rose 5.65% YoY to $23.13b (PHP1.21t) whilst those for rural and cooperative banks increased 7.64% YoY to $4.90b (PHP256.5b) in Q1.

Also read: Philippine banks go digital with launch of electronic fund transfer service

The assets held by non-banks, which include investment houses with trusts businesses, non-stock savings and loan associations, pawnshops, financing companies, security dealers/brokers, and trust corporations, also inched up 0.8% YoY to $66.72b (PHP3.49t).

Overall, the Philippine financial system is well capitalised with a combined resource pool of $367.23b (PHP19.21t). However, a report by credit rating agency Fitch has noted that a growing exposure to the property sector poses considerable risks to the Philippine banking sector as real estate loans have grown rapidly with a compound annual growth rate clocking in at 22% over 2012-2017 versus slower system loan growth of 17% over the same period.

Also read: APAC banks grapple with growing property risks

As of end-March, there are 43 big banks, 55 thrift banks, 462 rural banks and 25 cooperative banks operating in the Philippines.

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