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| 18 October, 2017

Riyad Bank third-quarter profit up 47.7%, beats forecasts

A Saudi money changer displays Saudi Riyal banknotes at a currency exchange shop in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia July 27, 2017.
Image for illustrative purpose.

A Saudi money changer displays Saudi Riyal banknotes at a currency exchange shop in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia July 27, 2017. Image for illustrative purpose.

REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

The bank, which had reported flat or lower profits in nine of the last ten quarters, made SAR1.08bln ($288mln) in the three months to Sept 30.

DUBAI- Riyad Bank , Saudi Arabia's fourth-largest bank by assets, on Wednesday reported a 47.7 percent rise in third-quarter net profit, beating analysts' forecasts as income from investments and fees and commission rose.

The bank, which had reported flat or lower profits in nine of the last ten quarters, made 1.08 billion riyals ($288 million) in the three months to Sept. 30, up from 729 million riyals in the same period of 2016, it said in a bourse filing.

Three analysts polled by Reuters had on average forecast the bank's quarterly profit would be 852.5 million riyals.

The bank said higher income from net special commission income and fees and commission was partially offset by a drop in exchange income and gains on non-trading investments. Its performance was also helped by a fall in provisions for credit losses and investments.

After having their performance clipped for the past three years by the impact of lower oil prices, Saudi banks have been aided by an improvement in liquidity in recent months. But analysts have said that banks are likely to face a rise in non-performing loans as the economy continues to slow.

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($1 = 3.7502 riyals)

(Reporting By Tom Arnold. Editing by Jane Merriman) ((Tom.Arnold@thomsonreuters.com; +97144536265; Reuters Messaging: tom.arnold.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))