By Clarence Leong

 

Standard Chartered PLC's second-quarter profit rose 6.5% compared to the same period a year earlier, thanks to stronger interest income, as it announced a new $500 million share buyback program.

The Asia-focused bank Friday posted second-quarter underlying pretax profit of $1.32 billion. Operating income rose 6.5% to $3.93 billion, driven by higher net-interest income as central banks increased interest rates aggressively to fight elevated inflation.

Its net-interest income rose 8.2% to $1.85 billion, while its net-interest margin increased by 0.13 percentage point to 1.35%.

For the first half, credit impairments were $267 million, up $314 million from a year earlier. The bank said it is alert to "an unpredictable and challenging external environment including the continued impact of COVID-19 in key markets, pressures in the China commercial real estate sector, commodity price volatility and the impact of the Russia/Ukraine war."

"Looking forward, whilst recession risks are rising in the West, we are seeing the early stages of a post-pandemic recovery in many of the markets in which we operate, underpinning our prospects for growth," Stanchart's Chief Executive Bill Winters said.

 

Write to Clarence Leong at clarence.leong@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 29, 2022 00:48 ET (04:48 GMT)

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