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Steady Growth For Loan and Building

Steady Growth For Loan and Building

Steady growth in tangible assets and mortgage advances marked a year of solid performance for AX listed South Island-based Loan and Building Society (LBS).

LBS lifted its asset value by 13% to $115.3 million, mortgages by 11% to $91.9 million and shareholders¹ funds by 4.5% to $9.8 million.

The chairman, George Brown, said shareholders will receive a final dividend of 7 cents per share, fully imputed, making a total of 14 cents for the full year.

This compared to a total dividend of 14.5 cents per share the previous year.

LBS reported an after-tax profit of $773,000 for the year ended 31 March 2004, compared to $867,000 the previous year.

"A number of high expense items combined to reduce this year¹s result, but these were all non-recurring costs," Mr Brown said.

"They arose from listing on the Alternative Exchange, upgrading our computer system with Jade software, and introducing internet banking and Eftpos cards to our customers.

"All these developments have been completed and are enabling us to generate further profitable growth in the competitive banking market."

He said the AX listing in November last year helped lift LBS shares to $3.60 by 31 March, substantially improving shareholders¹ equity.

On the loans front, LBS deliberately set a conservative risk policy across its farming, business and home mortgage portfolios.

"While we expect the economy to be more challenging in the next year, we anticipate a higher level of profit without the one-off costs incurred in the year to date."

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