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Shareholders approve N80.94bn GTBank payout

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Shareholders approve N80.94bn GTBank payout

SHAREHOLDERS of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, on Thursday in Lagos
unanimously approved the directors’ recommendation N2.45 final dividend
per share for the year ended December 31, 2018, which in addition to the
30 kobo half-year interim, brings total payout for the full-year to N2.75 or
N80.935bn.
Gross earnings for the period increased by 3.69% from N419.226bn in
2017 to N434.698bn, while a combination of the drop in loan impairment
charges from N12.169bn to N4.906bn, and rise in fee and commission
income to N52.367bn from N42.921bn, lifted profit after tax by 9.96% from
N167.912bn to N184.639bn.
Commenting on the results, shareholders variously described it as
superlative, given the tight and even unfriendly operating environment and
multiplicity of taxes that leave government and its agencies richer at the
end of the day than investors.
Nonah-Awoh, a shareholder warned the management to work towards a
time, soon, when account maintenance fees, which is a good source of
revenue for most banks today, is wiped off by competition or regulation, just
as COT that was once a veritable source of income.
He lamented the N18.23bn reported as unclaimed dividend, an amount, he
said mostly belong to small retail investors, challenging the board and

management to work seriously towards reducing it drastically before the
next Annual General Meeting.
The shareholder noted that GTBank alone paid N19.4bn in taxes to the
government last year, up from N16.06bn for the 2017 financial year; while
the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) received N31bn
into its sinking fund in two years. Added to these, he continued, is the
N7.89bn deposit insurance premium, up from N7.935bn in 2017; and
another N14.4bn in agric SME contributions, which climbed from N6.4bn.
Nonah-Awoh accused the Federal Governance of stifling businesses with
excessive taxes, noting for example, that GTBank paid out a total of
N482.2bn in taxes including company income and withholding on the
dividend declared, which is much more than it would record in two years as
profit at current rate.
“We have paid the CBN (Central Bank of Nigeria) more than our
(GTBank’s) profit for three years,” he lamented further.
He wondered why banks will be encouraged to mobilize deposits at 3%
interest, only for the CBN to warehouse same in the name of Cash Reserve
Ratio for which nothing it paid. For him, to ensure the deposit mobilization
efforts of the banks are not wasted, the CBN should pay 3% on the N416bn
warehoused funds. This, he noted, would earn GTBank N12.5bn, while
even 2% could increase its revenue by N8.3bn, which he stressed, is
significant.
Responding, Segun Agbaje, chief executive of the bank assured that
ongoing efforts would continue to reduce the quantum of unclaimed
dividend in its books, stressing the need for care so that impostors do not
steal other people’s dividend. Agbaje said the bank is not under any threat,
even if account maintenance charge goes away today.
On the N400bn CRR with the CBN, he said the management is not in any
position to speak on the matter; just as he said the board is not considering
the possibility of bonus shares, as it would affect payment of healthy
dividend to shareholders.

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