Standard Chartered announced a $ 254 million share buyback program and said it would resume paying a dividend, despite losing in the fourth quarter as the coronavirus pandemic affected its performance.
The Asia-centric UK-based bank reported a loss of $ 449 million in the last three months of 2020. Standard Chartered’s annual profits fell 57%, below analyst estimates , to $ 1.6 billion. Credit impairment charges more than doubled during the year to $ 2.3 billion.
“We remain strong and profitable, although the returns in 2020 have been clearly impacted by higher provisions, reduced economic activity and low interest rates, in each case the result of Covid-19,” said Bill Winters , General manager.
The lender has said it will issue a dividend of $ 0.09 per share, becoming the last major UK bank to resume payments since the Bank of England partially lifted the dividend ban in December. HSBC earlier this week said it would earn investors $ 0.15 per share.