"The increase in profits was driven by further growth in lending and deposits, with both books exceeding £1billion."
United Trust Bank has reported a 22% increase in operating income to £61.2m over 2018 as its loan book exceeds £1bn for the first time.
The bank increased its profit before tax by 19% to £31.4m, more than double its 2015 level, and its loan book grew by 20% to £1.034bn.
United Trust Bank's CEO, Graham Davin, commented: “United Trust Bank has performed extremely well in 2018 despite considerable economic and political uncertainty and I am very pleased to report another strong set of results.
“The increase in profits was driven by further growth in lending and deposits, with both books exceeding £1billion, combined with good cost management. A reduction in the cost income ratio from 45.4% to 43.9%, despite the costs associated with the creation of the new Motor Finance division, reflects increasing scale effects throughout the business and most particularly the Mortgage division. We expect this ratio to continue to fall as scale increases further and we invest in systems to improve efficiency. The key measure of Return on Average Equity remains strong at 22.3%.
“Notwithstanding the economic and political headwinds, we are planning for another year of growth and solid returns. We operate in large growing markets where the clearing banks are less active. We have experience of developing and building business units and of collecting loans in less benign markets. We also benefit from having a balanced, experienced and highly effective team.
“On behalf of the Board and management team, we extend our thanks to our customers and brokers for their support and to all our staff, across all departments, for their contribution towards achieving these results. It is the staff’s dedication, consistent hard work, focus and passion for getting things right that makes the Bank what it is. It is a privilege to work with such a talented team.”