PKO Drops as Slowing Economy Curbs Lending: Warsaw Mover

PKO Bank Polski SA, Poland’s largest lender, declined the most in four months as the country’s slowing economy cut profit and curbed lending.

The stock slumped 2.4 percent in Warsaw, the steepest drop since Nov. 7. The amount of shares traded was 105 percent of the three-month daily average, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

PKO’s net income fell 1.5 percent to 3.75 billion zloty ($1.2 billion) in 2012 after its net interest margin shrank to 4.5 percent in the fourth quarter from 4.7 percent in the previous three months, the state-controlled bank said in a presentation on its website today. Net loans rose 0.8 percent in the fourth quarter over the previous three months, compared with a full-year increase of 1.6 percent, it said.

Fourth-quarter revenue was “disappointing” while “margin pressure will be a key concern over the coming quarter,” Michal Konarski and Mark MacRae, Warsaw-based analysts at Wood & Co., said in a note today.

PKO sees Polish banks’ combined profit falling 10 percent to 15 percent this year, Pawel Borys, head of strategy at PKO, told reporters in Warsaw today. The bank’s business performance won’t be “significantly different” from the market, he said.

Poland’s economy will probably grow 1.2 percent this year, the weakest pace in 12 years, as domestic demand and exports are hampered by weak economic performance of the country’s main trading partners, the European Commission said on Feb. 22.

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