Commercial, wealth management businesses boost Oriental's Q2 profits

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Friday, July 22, 2011

Puerto Rico's Oriental Financial Group (NYSE: OFG) booked a US$25.3mn profit in 2Q11 compared to a US$4.2mn loss in the year-ago period, mainly thanks to growth in its commercial and wealth management banking businesses, company president and CEO José Rafael Fernández told a conference call.

"Net interest income continues to rebound, while our core banking and wealth management operations continue to perform well, the cost of retail deposits continues to decline, and we maintain strong asset quality," he said.

Fernández also said Oriental continues to evaluate strategic opportunities in Puerto Rico, while returning capital to investors through increased share buybacks.

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Last month, the company's board approved a new program to purchase an additional US$70mn of common stock in the open market.

Oriental was able to increase assets and deposits through its branch network, trust department and brokerage business in 2Q11.

"Over the last 12 months, we have successfully expanded that model to our commercial banking business, enabling us to capture market share by attracting quality corporate and small commercial clients," Fernández said.

Oriental is Puerto Rico's fourth largest bank. It operates through its two subsidiaries - Oriental Bank and Trust and Oriental Financial Services - and has 30 financial centers throughout the island.

To read Oriental's earnings release, go to this link