Komercni banka’s preliminary IAS 2000 results were better than expected (in terms of both market consensus as well as our own forecasts). The after-tax loss stood at CZK 19 mil.,vs. our forecast of CZK 724 mil. loss and Reuters’ market consensus of CZK 870 mil. loss. The two major factors behind the lower loss were (i) lower net provisioning charge of CZK 7.87 bil. (vs. our forecast of CZK 8.45 bil.) and (ii) lower tax charge of CZK 17 mil. (we expected a CZK 600 mil. tax). Operating income was actually worse than expected, at CZK 7.87 bil. (we expected CZK 8.3 bil.), representing a 3% growth y-to-y. About half of the difference is due to higher-than-expected restructuring charge of CZK 875 mil., the other half is due to higher-than-expected operating costs (which is perhaps the only disappointment in the figures). KB’s revenues were 5.4% up, at CZK 21.5 bil. in line with our forecasts, including the most important segments (net interest income, up 2.8%, and net income from fees and commissions, up 1.7%). Total assets grew 3.6%, to CZK 404 bil. The bank did not release more balance sheet data, or information on its loan book. Moreover, the bank’s CEO R. Vavra made yesterday bullish comments on this year’s revenues and operating profit.
We consider the figures rather good. We believe that the medium-term upside is not great unless the government achieves a truly excellent selling price for its 60% stake. At the same time, the downside is also limited, and we recommend holding the stock.