DURBAN – Nedbank, which concluded its managed separation from Old Mutual in October last year, reported that for the year to end December its total assets exceeded R1 trillion for the first time despite a subdued economy, which in the period was in a technical recession.

The bank yesterday posted a 14,5 percent increase in headline earnings to R13,5billion with Return on Equity (RoE), excluding goodwill, improving from 16,4 percent to 17,9 percent. The group said the results were boosted by a turnaround in its share of associate income from Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI).

ETI reported a profit of R375million during the period, from last year’s loss of R975m.

Chief executive Mike Brown said 2018 was a year of achievement across a broad front in challenging banking conditions. “We were faced with a technical recession in South Africa in the first half of last year and the increasing reality that our country is still at the early stages of a political and institutional turnaround.

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“Despite subdued economic conditions across credit and transactional banking, managed operations, excluding ETI, delivered positive earnings growth with slightly faster growth in the second half,” Brown said. Business Report