Standard & Poor’s, the international credit rating agency, said that its outlook on National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) is stable, reflecting the agency’s belief that NBK’s overall business and financial profile will remain resilient and generally unchanged over the next two years.
Earlier this month, Standard & Poor’s affirmed the long-term credit ratings of National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) at A+, the highest in the Middle East. All the bank’s ratings carry a stable outlook.
“Our outlook on NBK is stable, reflecting our belief that its overall business and financial profile will remain resilient and generally unchanged over the next two years,” said Standard & Poor’s in a report on NBK published yesterday (Monday, May 27, 2013).
The agency pointed out that NBK’s main rating strengths include the bank’s leading commercial position in its domestic market, its strong capitalization on the back of good earning capacity, and more resilient asset quality than that of its peers.
Standard & Poor’s said: “our assessment of NBK's business position is strong. We believe the bank's business position will remain stable, underpinned by its leading position in Kuwait, long track record of good and stable performance, as well as good and experienced management. Strategy has proved flexible through the global financial and economic crisis so far. Earnings by segment and geography tend to be well diversified.”
“We view NBK’s capital as strong on the basis of the bank’s strong capitalization and good earning capacity,” the agency added. “We believe NBK will continue to manage its domestic and foreign organic growth conservatively in the current economic environment.”
The agency stated that “NBK is the largest bank in Kuwait, with $63.4 billion of consolidated assets on March 31, 2013.” It added: “Total assets grew by 20.5% in 2012, notably as NBK increased its stake in domestic Islamic lender Boubyan Bank to 58.3%. We consider Boubyan a positive addition in NBK’s strategy.”
NBK has consistently been awarded the highest credit ratings of all banks in the region by the major international rating agencies: Moody's, Standard & Poor's and Fitch Ratings.