Standard Bank hit by COVID-19

  • ATM volumes down 38%
  • Branch volumes fell by 61%
  • VAF disbursements declined more than 70%

Harare – Stanbic bank parent, Standard Bank Group posted reduced volumes in the four months period to April.

The group said the imposed lockdowns have negatively impacted sales, disbursements and transaction activity levels.

According to a trading update, the bank registered a 38% and 61% drop in ATM and branch volumes respectively.

Standard Bank added that while there has been an improvement in activity levels during the course of May, they remain below those seen prior to the lockdown.

In South Africa, the bank said deeds offices and dealerships were closed in April which halted mortgage disbursements and resulted in a more than 70% decline in VAF disbursements compared to March.

However, the bank said loan growth in the first four months of 2020 was robust although it is expected to slow from current levels.

This was attributed to the combination of higher digital disbursements, corporate facility drawdowns and a weaker Rand which led to a strong double-digit growth period on period.

The group added that low business and consumer confidence levels are expected to continue to be a constraint on secured portfolio growth and while instalment relief is likely to temporarily support portfolio levels, this is likely to be offset by lower new business disbursements.

Likewise, deposit growth was also strong period on period, in particular, demand deposits, as corporates drew down on facilities to access liquidity and placed it back on deposit.

As at 31 March 2020, the group’s common equity tier one ratio was 12.9% and liquidity coverage ratio was 141.9%. and as at 30 April 2020, the group remained well capitalised and liquid.

Standard bank alluded that, “Based on our scenario analysis, the group’s capital ratios are expected to remain strong and above required minimums. In line with the Prudential Authority’s guidance on dividends, the group is not planning to declare an FY20 interim ordinary dividend.”

The group said there remains a high degree of uncertainty regarding the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated governmental responses will have on the economies in the markets in which the group operates.

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