BY OLUSHOLA BELLO, Lagos
A total of 11 listed banks have declared a cumulative N308.206 billion dividends to their numerous shareholders in their respective 2020 financial year, in a move to give these investors good returns on investment, LEADERSHIP can now reveal.
Findings by LEADERSHIP Friday also revealed that the move has also ensured that the equities market returned to profitability last week as the results of the affected banks played a major.
The dividend declaring banks include: Access Bank, Zenith Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank), Stanbic IBTC Holdings, United Bank for Africa (UBA), FBN Holding, Union Bank, Fidelity Bank, FCMB Group, Sterling Bank and Jaiz Bank.
More banks are expected to release their 2020 annual reports in the current week and most of them are expected to declare dividends to their shareholders as well.
A dividend is a payment made by a company to its shareholders, usually as a distribution of profits. Dividend payment is one of the very few ways available for investors to earn a constant stream of income. It is also the main reason shareholders hold on to their shares in a company. Therefore, it brings great satisfaction to investors when these companies declare dividends to their shareholders.
According to the latest data obtained from the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) by LEADERSHIP, Zenith Bank paid the highest total dividend of N94.188 billion or N3.00 per share. Guaranty Trust Bank paid N88.29 billon or N3 per share dividend, while Stanbic IBTC Holdings paid a total of N44.42 billion dividend. Access Bank’s shareholders received N28.436 billion; United Bank for Africa (UBA), N17.78 billion; FBN Holdings (FBNH), N16.15 billion; Union Bank of Nigeria (UBN), N7.28 billion; Fidelity Bank, N6.37 billion; FCMB Group, N2.97 billion; Sterling Bank, N1.44 billion, and Jaiz Bank, N0.88 billion.
Despite economic headwinds attributable to COVID-19, Nigerian Banks have proven to be strong in terms of profitability and giving back to shareholders in terms of dividend payout.
Banks like Zenith Bank and Guaranty Trust Bank have conducted their annual general meeting and paid their shareholders dividend, while the others have fixed the date for their meeting.The shareholders commended the board and management of the both banks (Zenith Bank and Guaranty Trust Bank) for the improved financial results and dividend payment.
Capital market analysts stated that these performances confirmed that the Nigerian banking sector successfully weathered the storm of COVID-19 pandemic; a further justification of why the sector kept growing even when the broader economy slide into a recession.
Speaking to shareholders, the chairman of Zenith Bank, Jim Ovia, said the year 2020 was characterised by significant global and domestic economic developments with far-reaching implications for the Nigerian financial services sector, saying, “as a resilient brand, however, we were able to leverage the innate opportunities within the environment and record a performance that further attests to the Group’s sound financial health.”
Also, the managing director and chief executive officer of Guaranty Trust Bank, Mr Segun Agbaje, noted that the year 2020 was arguably the most challenging year that the world has faced in decades the strength, scale and liquidity of its balance sheet, coupled with the quality of its past decisions and the efficacy of its digital-first customer-centric strategy gave GTBank the resilience and flexibility to navigate the economic shocks and market volatility that dominated the year.