Standard Chartered posted a pre-tax profit of $1.11 billion, beating consensus estimates of $1 billion and resiliently reaping the rewards of its multi-year cost-cutting exercises.
The bank recorded a net profit of $727 million in the three months ended September 30, up from $752 million in the same period last year. By region, Europe and the Americas led the pack with 19 percent income growth followed by ASEAN and South Asia at 13 percent. Despite ongoing unrest in Hong Kong, its Greater China and North Asia business defied the odds and registered 2 percent year-on-year income growth for the quarter.
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Our strategy of the last few years has progressively created a stronger and more resilient business,» said Bill Winters, Standard Chartered chief executive, in a statement. The continuing execution of that strategy remains our priority, enabling us to face the more challenging external environment confidently.
Winters joined the bank in 2015 and has since then focused on restructuring by cutting management layers and thousands of jobs. After two years of losses, the bank returned to profit in 2017. In addition to profitability, the efforts aim to meet the target return on tangible equity of at least 10 percent by 2021, the bank noted.
Still, there are growing headwinds from the combination of continuing geopolitical tensions and expectations of declining near-term global growth and interest, the bank warned.