The West Brom today announces its results for the financial year ended 31 March 2017.
Key highlights include:
- Gross residential mortgage lending of £712m (2015/16: £673m)
- Growth of 15% in the prime owner occupied mortgage book
- Savings balances maintained at £4.4bn (2015/16: £4.4bn)
- Total assets stable at £5.8bn (2015/16: £5.8bn)
- Underlying profit before tax up 60% to £7.7m (2015/16: £4.8m)
- Statutory loss before tax of £19.8m (2015/16: profit of £13.5m), including costs of £27.5m relating to a one-off reimbursement of interest charged on certain buy to let mortgages
- Robust capital position, with a Common Equity Tier 1 capital ratio of 13.8% (2015/16: 14.6%).
Jonathan Westhoff, Chief Executive, commented:
Whilst the reported loss for the year is disappointing, we can draw considerable confidence from our strong underlying performance and year on year growth in residential mortgage lending. The main reason behind the loss has been clearly stated in the half yearly results, reflecting the one-off costs of reimbursing certain buy to let borrowers who had previously been charged additional interest on their loans.
Our purpose as a building society is to support the financial wellbeing of our members and we achieve this through providing funds to enable home ownership and a good return on the savings we are entrusted with. The Society’s performance during the year shows we are delivering on both counts.
Our broad range of mortgage products provides choice for new purchasers and existing homeowners seeking a better deal and represents excellent value through incentives such as no fees and cashback. Nearly a quarter of our new lending during the year was to first time buyers, which is essential for a healthy housing market.
We continue to offer a secure home for savers’ deposits and whilst the market is undoubtedly tough because of a prolonged period of low interest rates, our accounts remain competitively placed. Our internet bonus account released during the year, for example, featured regularly in the Best Buy tables.
We are also helping our members plan for later life and a series of pension-themed open days held in branches proved very popular thanks to the availability of independent financial advice through our partner Wren Sterling.
It has been a year of significant economic and political change and there is no denying that a number of challenges still lie ahead. Household budgets are being squeezed by rising inflation and a sense of uncertainty prevails around the forthcoming election and negotiations to leave the EU.
Yet as a Society we feel well equipped to face these challenges and, above all, have confidence in our ability to continue fulfilling the needs of our members.
A copy of our Preliminary Results is available to view and download here.