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National Bank of Kenya Hits Month-Low on Profits: Nairobi Mover

March 19 (Bloomberg) -- National Bank of Kenya Ltd., a state-owned lender, dropped to its lowest level in more than a month after reporting full-year earnings declined, missing estimates.

The stock slumped as much as 9.3 percent, the biggest drop since Feb. 15, to 18 shillings and traded at 19.15 shillings as of 3 p.m. in Nairobi, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Bad loans and deferred tax payments contributed to a 23 percent decline in net income for the year through December to 1.55 billion shillings ($19 million) or 3.19 shillings per share, Managing Director Reuben Marambii told reporters today in Nairobi.

“It was below our estimate for net income by 5 percent,” Faith Atiti, a research assistant at Nairobi-based Sterling Investment Bank, said in a phone interview.

NBK, as the lender is known, was expected to announce net income of 2.14 billion shillings, according to the average estimate of two analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Net interest income from loans rose to 5.08 billion shillings from 4.37 billion shillings, Marambii said. Provisions jumped to 854.5 million shillings from 681.5 million shillings a year earlier and loans surged 35 percent to 28.1 billion shillings.

“Because our loan portfolio went up rapidly, there was a corresponding increase in bad and doubtful debts,” said Marambii.

The lender, which last paid a dividend in 1998, has declared a payout of 40 cents per share, Marambii said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Ombok in Nairobi at eombok@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net.

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