CI upgrades Jordan Kuwait Bank’s outlook to positive
Emerging markets’ rating agency Capital Intelligence has raised the outlook for Jordan Kuwait Bank’s (JKB) domestic strength rating to positive. The domestic strength rating was upgraded last year to BBB-, while the long and short-term foreign currency ratings of BB- and B respectively are set at the sovereign ceiling for Jordan.
Over the last couple of years, JKB has become one of Jordan’s best performing banks. With clear business strategies in place, JKB’s financial profile has consistently surpassed that of the majority of Jordanian banks in recent years. Although many banks have seen their asset quality and profitability deteriorate amid a difficult operating environment, JKB has managed to build a stronger balance sheet and improve performance.
This is in large part attributable to the Bank’s underlying selective credit policy and conservatism. The lower than average problem loan ratio underscores the prime quality of JKB’s corporate customers. The balance sheet exhibits solid capitalization and liquidity is comfortable. Profitability continued to improve in 2001 buoyed by higher net interest and non-interest earnings, producing again some of the highest returns in the local market.
JKB is a medium size player in the fragmented Jordanian banking system, and currently operates a domestic network of 34 branches and offices. The Bank maintains a branch in Palestine and representative office in Algeria. In 2001, an international banking unit (IBU) was established in Cyprus. A commercial bank in nature, JKB is also active in corporate finance, treasury and consumer lending. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)