Zenith Bank Plc has proposed an interim dividend of 30 kobo per share for the half-year ended June 30, 2019.
The bank, in its half-year financial statement made available to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, reported an increase in its profit before tax to N111.68bn, compared to the N107.36bn recorded in the same period in 2018.
Profit after tax stood at N88.88bn, up from N81.74bn in 2018.
It said gross earnings grew by three per cent from N322.2bn in 2018 to N331.6bn in 2019, while non-interest income increased from N88.6bn in 2018 to N109.7bn in the period under review.
Zenith Bank also reported a N57.11bn drop in the value of its total assets over a six-month period.
The value of the total assets, which stood at N5.95tn as of December 31, 2018, dropped to N5.89tn at the end of the first half of the year.
The bank also reported a decrease in its liabilities from N5.14tn to N5.08tn in the first half of the year.
Zenith Bank said it planned to accelerate lending in the second half of the year as its loan-to-deposit ratio fell short of the regulator’s minimum target.
The loan book dropped by three per cent to N1.95tn ($5.bn) for the six months through June, while customer deposits increased by the same percentage to N3.8tn.
The Central Bank of Nigeria had in July told all banks to use at least 60 per cent of their deposits for loans by the end of September or face a penalty.
The apex bank said it aimed to fuel credit to grow the economy.