Bank of Valletta plc issued its Interim Directors’ Statement on 1 August. The Directors noted that during the third quarter of the Bank’s financial year from 1 April to 30 June, BOV witnessed:
(i) a very modest write-back on some of the financial markets investment portfolio mark-downs that had taken place in the first half of the year;
(ii) ongoing softness in commission income from investment, bancassurance and broking related activities;
(iii) sustained credit growth against a backdrop of an increasingly
competitive local market environment; and
(iv) a moderate increase in the overall net impairment provision.
The combined effect of these factors led to a marked improvement in profitability during the third quarter, when compared (on a pro rata basis) with the results for the six months ended 31 March 2008. As such, the Directors expect that the results for the second half of the current financial year will show a significant improvement over those reported for the first half of the year. The Directors also stated that in the light of the challenging conditions within the banking sector, the Group will continue to maintain strong and conservative capital adequacy and liquidity positions.