Determinants of Bank Profitability in Nigeria

CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION 1. 0BACKGROUND INFORMATION TO THE STUDY The study of profits is important not only because of the information it provides about the health of the economy in any given year, but also because profits are a key determinant of growth and employment in the medium-term. Changes in profitability are an important contributor to economic progress via the influence profits have on the investment and savings decisions of companies. This is because a rise in profits improves the cash flow position of companies and offers greater flexibility in the source of finance for corporate investment (i. . through retained earnings). Easier access to finance facilitates greater investment which boosts productivity, productive capacity, competitiveness and employment. The existence, growth and survival of a business organization mostly depend upon the profit which an organization is able to earn. It is true that when Profitability increases the value of shareholders may increase to considerable extent. The term profitability refers to the ability of the business organization to maintain its profit year after year.

The profitability of the organization will definitely contribute to the economic development of the nation by way of providing additional employment and tax revenue to government exchequer. Moreover, it will contribute the income of the investors by having a higher dividend and thereby improve the standard of living of the people. In order for a business entity (whether public or privately owned) to continue to prosper, there is need for its earnings to be relatively stable for its expansion and growth over time.

In addition to its level of earnings, its external environment must also be carefully understood and reliably anticipated (Burns and Mitchell, 1946). Earnings and business environments are so serious issues that a business must study and understand in order to face its opportunities and threats with vigor and determination. Where for instance, the business does not recognize the effects of changes in external environment which may necessitate changes in business earnings, it may suffer some losses consequently.

This perhaps explains why there has been continuing search by modern businesses to improve their methods of production necessary to cut down costs, and to develop new attributes or products, which may have wider appeal and satisfaction to their customers. On the other hand, the environmental and cyclical conditions are usually volatile and Dynamic (Sabo, 2003). This underscores the need for business firms to be able to reliably conduct forecast not only for their future demands or sales for their goods and services but also other variables that affect them directly such as their personnel and future profits.

The volatility of the changes in the variables from the external environment in specific ways to the immediate factory level and to the remote industry and task environments can sometimes be very significant. These calls for managers’ ability to appreciate and apply formal forecasting techniques to assist their banks achieve this veritable task. The determinants of profitability are empirically well explored although the definition of profitability varies among studies.

Disregarding the profitability measures, most of the banking studies have noticed that the capital ratio, loan-loss provisions and expense control are important drivers of high profitability. In this study, the drivers that would be considered are in two categories namely endogenous (internal) and exogenous (external) drivers or factors of Profitability. Internal drivers of bank performance or profitability can be defined as factors that are influenced by a bank’s management decisions. Such management effects will definitely affect the operating results of banks.

Although a quality management leads to a good bank performance, it is difficult, if not impossible, to assess management quality directly. In fact, it is implicitly assumed that such a quality will be reflected in the operating performance. As such, it is not uncommon to examine a bank’s performance in terms of those financial variables found in financial statements, such as the balance sheet and income statement (Krakah and Ameyaw, 2010). External determinants of bank profitability are factors that are beyond the control of a bank‘s management. They represent events outside the influence of the bank.

However, the management can anticipate changes in the external environment and try to position the institution to take advantage of anticipated developments. The two major components of the external determinants are macroeconomic factors and financial structure factors (Krakah and Ameyaw, 2010). In summary, it appears previous empirical research has suggested a possible connection between bank profitability and various internal and external determinants like Bank Assets, Loan-Loss Provisions, Total Deposit and Inflation, but is far from definitive as ifferent authors have made use of the inclusion and exclusion of different variables in their studies. Hence, our study will try to shed more light on this controversial issue by reviewing more empirical literatures on opposing sides of the topic and finally drawing conclusions from our findings from the mode of data analysis we intend to carry out. 1. 1STATEMENT OF THE RESEARCH PROBLEM The Federal Government of Nigeria and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have perennially sought permanent measures that would enhance the profitability and stability of banks operating in the Nigerian banking industry.

Unfortunately, they have never completely succeeded in achieving this feat. For instance, from 1987 – 1991 financial sector reforms (intended to enhance competition in the sector, mobilize savings and lead to a more efficient allocation of resources) were implemented, encompassing elements of liberalization (such as the decontrolling of interest rates) and measures to enhance prudential regulation and tackle bank distress (Oluranti, 1991).

Also, between 1990 and 2004, bank regulators increased the minimum share capital requirement for banks operating in Nigeria five times, namely in 1991, 1997, 2000, 2001 and 2004 (Aburime and Uche, 2006). However, these measures were unsuccessful in curtailing the spate of bank distress and failures in the1990s and beyond (Oluranti, 1991; Beck et al. , 2005 and Brownbridge, 2005). Currently, a set of banking sector reforms have also been introduced to ensure inter alia a strong and reliable banking sector (Okagbue and Aliko, 2005).

Unfortunately, if the historical antecedents of financial sector reforms in Nigeria are anything to go by, the current reforms may also not help to improve bank profitability and stability in Nigeria. Another major factor, which has often not been given appropriate attention, is the issue of strategic planning through forecasting and prediction of future performance indices of commercial banks (deposit money banks). To achieve this task, a bank must recognize and anticipate the important Variable affecting its profit determination.

The works of Stevens (1999), Blyther (2000) and Naceur (2003) established the inability of the business firms to adequately anticipate and forecast several operating variables in them as a very critical factor in explaining their non-performance. They argued that it is dangerous for a firm to fail to anticipate its cash flow sales, profits and production under whatever situation it finds itself. Given the efforts stated above banks need to appreciate the role of other indicators in enhancing the profitability or performance for that matter.

Indeed examining the determinants of corporate profits in the banking sector in Nigeria is crucial, if these banks are going to remain competitive, efficient, and viable taking into cognizance the challenges that befall competition in the industry. 1. 2RESEARCH QUESTIONS The motivation behind this study stems from the fact that in the past decade or so, a lot of tremendeous changes has been witnessed in the Nigerian banking industry thereby leading to a number of reforms that has seen players in the banking industry transform from one level to another.

Hence, this study will sought to answer the following research questions: 1. Is there a long run and short run relationship between bank profitability and its determinants? 2. To what extent are discrepancies in First Bank’s profitability due to variations in endogenous factors  under  the  control  of  bank  management as well as exogeneous factors under the control of the macroeconomy? 3. Given previous empirical studies on this topic, can it be deduced that First of Nigeria actually makes sustainable profits in the last three decades? . 3OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY The sole objective of this study is to provide a framework to investigate the factors or indicators intrinsic in the bank’s asset structure that had impacted on their profitability, and performance for that matter, and make policy recommendation that could be used by bank managers in their policy decisions in the future. Specifically the study seeks to achieve the following Objectives: 1. Examine the profitability of First Bank Nigeria Plc during the last three decades. 2.

Study  the  key  endogenous or company-level value  drivers  of  performance  or profitability  of  the commercial bank in Nigeria using FBN Plc 3. Study  the  key  exogenous or macroeconomicvalue  drivers  of  performanceor profitability  of  the commercial bank in Nigeria using FBN Plc 4. To find out if any long-run or short-run relationship exists between Profitability variables and its determinants using FBN Plc. 5. Make policy recommendations regarding the key drivers of profitability at First Bank of Nigeria as well as other commercial banks in the country based on the empirical findings. 1. 4SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

Given the relation between the well-being of the banking sector and the growth of the economy (Rajan and Zingales, 1998; Levine, 1998), knowledge of the underlying factors that influence the financial sector’s profitability is therefore essential not only for the managers of the banks, but also for numerous stakeholders such as the central banks, bankers associations, governments, and other financial authorities. Knowledge of these factors would be useful in helping the regulatory authorities and bank managers formulate future policies aimed at improving the profitability of the Nigerian banking sector.

Furthermore, at the present time, the type of analysis to be employed in this study is completely missing in the literature concerning profitability in the banking sector in Nigeria. 1. 5SCOPE OF THE STUDY Even though there is an existence of numerous empirical studies on the determinants of corporate profitability in the banking sector almost none exists regarding banks case studies in Nigeria, with one exception though in a study by Krakah and Ameyaw (2010) who found a significant correlations between Bank’s Financial Statement and Macroeconomic variables with Profitability given case studies of two banks in Ghana.

However, since their study relied more on a cross-sectional approaches from two different banks, this study collects a broad array of profitability determinant indicators, specifically, using data solely from First Bank of Nigeria from 1980 to 2010, we will be examining different measures and linkages of endogenous and exogenous variables like total assets, interest income, total overhead expenses, money supply, annual inflation rate and Return on Assets (ROA).

Furthermore, since the determinants of profitability are a complex and multi-faceted concept, as such no single measure will capture all aspects of the internal and external determinants in the Financial Statements of First Bank to be used in this study. 1. 6PLAN OF THE STUDY For the purpose of simplification and clarification, this study will be drafted in the following manner: Chapter one will begin with a brief introduction on the topic of our study assessing a few opinions on what some authors have to say relating to the topic of our study.

This chapter continues by analyzing some of the problems in the Nigerian economy as it relates to the banking industry as a catalyst for economic growth, then followed by the research questions. The statement of objectives to the study follows afterwards then the significance of the study comes next. An historical overview detailing various facets of developments in the Nigerian banking industry from pre-independence to date is also examined in this chapter. This chapter will be concluded by giving the scope of study.

Chapter two of this study, which is the Literature Review and Theoretical Framework, will begin with a brief introduction of what the chapter aims to achieve and how it will be structured. This will be followed by stating various theoretical frameworks to be used in the study. Furthermore, an empirical review of related literatures on the determinants of banking industry profitability as seen by different authors who have written widely on the topic published their findings on this issue would be discussed.

This chapter continues by reviewing the Nigerian banking industry performance over the year with a comparative analysis of all the major banks making up the industry. This will be achieved through the use of charts and graphs. Finally, this chapter will be rounded-off by the historical existence of First Bank of Nigeria Plc as well as the corporate profile of the bank. Chapter three, which is the research methodology chapter of this study, will also begin with a brief introduction to the chapter.

This will be followed by the method of data collection section as well as method of data analysis section where we will explain the various methods of analysis like Multiple Correlation Matrix, Cointegration Regression Model as well as the Error Correction Mechanism of time series econometric analysis intended to analyze our data is explained. Also in this chapter, we shall state the various regression models to be estimated for this study as well as an explanation of the justification of the variables to be included in the model.

This chapter will also explain the how the data gotten for this study will be formatted in Ratio forms to suit need of our intentions for this study. In addition, the statement of hypothesis and assumptions behind our model will be stated in this chapter and the various reasons behind the sampling procedure of arriving at FBN Plc for this study will be explained. Finally, this chapter will be concluded by explaining ‘A Priori’ Expectations of each variable within the model and the yardsticks in econometric measurement to be used in acceptance or rejection of the various hypothesis stated for this study.

Chapter four, which is the data Presentation, Analysis and Interpretation chapter, will be introduced stating what should be expected as the chapter moves from section to section. Here, the data used for this study will be presented in a tabular format then followed by the analysis and estimation of the explicit model already stated in chapter three of this study. Finally, this chapter is concluded by interpreting the models estimated via different methods of econometric analysis.

Chapter five is the Summary, Policy Recommendations and Conclusion chapter of this study. This chapter, like the previous ones before it also begins with an introduction of what to expect, this is followed by a summary of our study thus far. Hence, policy recommendations would be made under a different section and finally, the conclusions of our finding on the study as it relates to the analysis made in chapter four of the study would be highlighted in this study.

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