The first question asked of any bank releasing a financial report at the moment is how the home loan business is going. In the case of ING Bank (Australia), the answer is “very well”.
ING’s 2018 annual report shows 11 per cent growth in its loan book to A$58 billion last year. Mortgages make up more than $48 billion of the total – an increase of 9 per cent.
The bank added more than 400,000 ‘new to bank’ mortgage customers and 500,000 new Orange Everyday payment accounts.
ING Australia chief executive Uday Sareen says the growth in customer numbers has less to do with customers leaving big banks and more to do with the expansion of ING’s product set. Last year it launched a credit card, a personal loan and a youth account.
Total customer numbers now exceed two million and ING counts 645,000 of them as “primary bank customers”. Deposits grew 9 per cent to $43.4 billion.
The bank made a net profit of $401 million – up 15.2 per cent from $348 million in 2018. Total interest income was $2.2 billion – up from $2.1 billion.
The loan impairment charge was $13 million, compared with a charge of $11 million in 2017.
The cost-to-income ratio was 40 per cent and the capital adequacy ratio was 12.9 per cent.
Former Australian Prudential Regulation Authority chair John Laker was appointed to the board at the start of the year.