Belfast Telegraph

Dankse Bank pre-tax profits soar to £147.5m with surge in mortgage lending

By John Mulgrew

Dankse Bank has seen its pre-tax profits soar to £147.5m - buoyed by a surge in mortgage lending.

And while write backs still make up a portion of the profits, the bank said mortgage lending was up 28% in 2017.

Pre-tax profits before impairments stood at £118.3m. That's up from £91m a year earlier.

Overall lending grew to just shy of £5bn.

Danske Bank's chief executive in Northern Ireland, Kevin Kingston said: "We are pleased to publish a strong set of financial results for 2017. Restructuring and organisational change helped strengthen the results, but at the core was an improved underlying business performance. Lending balances are up 9% year-on-year and deposit growth has also been marked, rising by 5%.

“2017 was another strong year for our mortgage business. There was a 28% increase in new mortgage lending year-on-year, with our market activity share now having more than doubled since 2015. We have assisted the mortgage business through the introduction of a digital system for the third broker network.

"This investment has made brokers’ online interactions with our products slicker, reducing their workload and in turn improving customer experience. We have also expanded our own mortgage consultant team, making this service more readily available."

The Northern Ireland chief executive said they completed a programme of relocating their small business advisers back into key branches throughout Northern Ireland.

"This decision was taken as a result of strong feedback from small businesses and it has allowed our people to be more accessible and closer to customers.

"These changes have made a tangible impact, with an average of 37 new small business relationships being established every week.

Mr Kingston added: "Lending to medium to larger-sized businesses was also up, 3% higher year-on-year. Enhancements to our customer proposition included the introduction of a new digital invoice finance system.

"The corporate sector in particular remained buoyant, despite ongoing economic uncertainty as a result of the EU referendum."

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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