ANZ New Zealand has announced its full year results, and has reported a net profit after tax (NPAT) of $1,336 million for the 12 months to 30 September 2020 – down 27% on the previous year.
Cash NPAT was down by 29% on the previous year at $1,371 million.
Chief executive Antonia Watson admitted that COVID-19 had brought “unprecedented challenges” to the business, and that the results reflected expected credit losses due to a difficult economic environment, as well as its sale of UDC Finance in September 2020. She noted the previous year’s results had also benefited from the sale of OnePath Life and ANZ NZ’s share in Paymark Limited.
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Throughout the course of COVID-19, ANZ NZ has offered financial assistance to around 43,000 personal, home and business loan customers through various payment deferral and interest-only schemes, which cover lending of around $27 billion.
“COVID-19 brought unprecedented challenges to our country and consequently for many businesses, including ANZ NZ, and this is reflected in our full-year result,” Watson commented.
“Despite the difficult year, ANZ NZ has continued to perform well, demonstrating it can weather challenging economic conditions and play an important role in supporting customers through the crisis.”
“I’m proud that, despite such challenging conditions, we’ve been able to continue to lend and provide certainty to customers with an approach that is fair, transparent and consistent so access to credit isn’t a factor that holds them back,” she continued.
“New Zealand has made much better progress in fighting the virus than most countries. While that’s encouraging there will be many challenges as the country emerges from the high level of response and starts to rebuild.”
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Watson says that business confidence has bounced back quickly along with other indicators of economic activity, and that the low interest rate environment has helped customers make savings and pay off their loans faster.
She says that although she is confident many businesses will survive, there is no doubt that the next few months will be difficult.
“While the efforts of people in New Zealand to contain the spread of COVID-19 have reduced its impact, we must remember that there has been a considerable cost to many in the community,” Watson said.
“To help these organisations, ANZ NZ donated a total of $2 million to Women’s Refuge, Age Concern New Zealand and the Salvation Army’s foodbank network, as well as the Red Cross and a series of local charities in the Pacific supporting vulnerable people.
“The donations were in addition to ANZ NZ’s $13 million contribution of local sponsorships and donations to sports, arts, cultural and community organisations and events.”