By Frederik Richter
Bahrain-based Islamic lender books impairment provisions of $52.9m for full year on investment dips.
Bahrain-based Islamic lender Ithmaar Bank posted a fourth-quarter loss of $40.1 million on Sunday due to impairment provisions.
This compares with a net profit of $60.4 million in the year-earlier quarter. Gulf Arab banks have posted weak quarterly profits and some have reported losses as they had to write down investments and take provisions for bad loans due to the global financial turmoil.
Ithmaar said in a statement posted on the Bahraini bourse's website it booked impairment provisions of $52.9 million for the full year, $21.2 million of which accounted for declines in investments in regional and Asian stock markets.
"We stand ready to seize opportunities for prudent business development in accordance with the group's medium-term strategy," Chief Executive Michael Lee said in the statement, without elaborating.
The bank posted a full-year profit of $85.2 million. (Reuters)