ITAU Unibanco loan book to grow at end of forecast

Brazil’s largest lender, Itau Unibanco Holding SA, sees its loan book growing near the low end of its forecast range in 2019, reflecting the cut in the country’s economic growth estimate, Chief Financial Officer Milton Maluhy told journalists.

At the beginning of the year, Itau said its loan book was likely to grow between 8% and 11% this year.

Itau’s prediction comes as Brazil’s economy has been struggling to rebound and demand for corporate loans has been weak.

The bank’s second-quarter loan book grew by 5.9% from the same period a year earlier, mainly driven by consumer demand for credit cards and auto loans.

Itau also faces a more competitive banking arena, executives said. Partly as a result, fee income growth this year is unlikely to exceed 3.5%, the midpoint of its outlook provided in January, Maluhy said.

On Monday, the bank reported recurring net income of 7.034 billion reais ($1.86 billion), up 10.2% from a year earlier, helped by loans to individuals and trading gains.

Original Story:Reuters |Carolina Mandl |
Photo: Site ITAÚ
Edition: Prime Yield