Standard & Poor’s affirms NBK’s ratings, outlook stable
Standard & Poor’s, the international credit rating agency, affirmed the long-term credit ratings of National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) at A+. All the bank’s ratings carry a stable outlook.
“Our outlook on NBK is stable, reflecting our belief that its overall business and financial profile will remain resilient and generally unchanged over the next 12-24 months,” said Standard & Poor’s in a recent report on NBK.
The agency pointed out that NBK’s major rating strengths include the leading commercial position in its domestic market, strong capitalization on the back of good earning capacity, and more resilient asset quality than that of its peers.
Standard & Poor’s said that “NBK's business position is strong. We believe the bank's business position will remain stable, underpinned by its leading position in Kuwait, long track record of good and stable performance, as well as good and experienced management.”
“We assess NBK's capital and earnings as "strong," mainly based on the bank's level of capitalization and profitability,” the agency added. “NBK is the largest bank in Kuwait, with $48.8 billion of consolidated assets on December 31, 2011, and market shares in loans and deposits exceeding 25%. Earnings by segment and geography tend to be well diversified.”
NBK has consistently been awarded the highest credit ratings of all banks in the region by the major international rating agencies: Moody's, Standard & Poor's and Fitch Ratings. In 2012, NBK moved up 14 positions to rank 33 among the 50 safest banks in the world. NBK is the only Arab bank to be listed among the world’s 50 safest banks five times in a row.