HomeBusiness DigestProperty - 1 700 access $10b Beverley bonds

Property – 1 700 access $10b Beverley bonds

Ngoni Chanakira

BEVERLEY Building Society (Beverley) has advanced $9,844 billion to 1 684 applicants for the year ended June 30. The building society says this is an increase from the $4

,860 billion issued last year.

Beverley said of this amount $5,287 billion went to those either buying or building their own homes, and $2,616 billion approvals went towards the commercial and industrial sector.

It said a total of 495 applications were in respect of high-density properties.

Mortgage balances increased by $5,885 billion to $11,912 billion with arrears representing 0,48% of the total amount.

The building society said last year arrears represented 0,38% of the total amount.

During the period under review Beverley said despite the worsening economic conditions and hyperinflation, it was pleased with a surplus before appropriations in historic cost terms of $4,067 billion, which was up by 204% on the previous year.

The inflation-adjusted figures, which enable a comparison of results in real terms, show a surplus before appropriations of $4,124 billion, a decrease of 14% on 2002.

“The past year has seen a rapidly worsening economic environment,” Beverley said in its audited results for the year ended June 30.

“Hyperinflation continued unabated with year-on-year inflation reaching 364,5% at June 30 and just under 400% at July 31.”

Inflation has however continued to increase and has reached 455,6% for September.

“Negative interest rates continued and there has been a chronic shortage of basic inputs, particularly those with a foreign currency content. The already difficult operating environment was further fuelled by the critical shortage of bank notes in circulation, which reached crisis proportions in the latter half of the financial year,” Beverley said.

In historical cost terms, total income at $8,209 billion was up 202% on last year and included other income, which increased by 169% to $1,128 billion.

The cost to income ratio remained largely unchanged at slightly over 50%.

Beverley said staff costs remained the highest cost component comprising 56% of total operating costs.

Total assets in historic cost terms grew by 192% driven mainly by inflows into Paid up Permanent Shares, traditional savings and an improvement in money market activities.

In inflation-adjusted terms, total assets reduced by 35% compared to the previous year, an indication of the sensitivity of the building society business to hyperinflation.

“The Society’s single largest problem continues to be the critical shortage of bank notes which has impacted on the service delivery to our customers,” Beverley said. “The Society will continue to do its utmost to alleviate the hardships to our clients who bear the brunt of this market-wide crisis. In the firm belief that the current difficulties will be overcome, the Society continues to invest in its branch network with the new Harare city centre branch coming on line during the year and existing facilities in a number of outlying branches being expanded.”

The building society said the bank note shortage had resulted in it advancing its programme to upgrade and expand point of sale systems within branches and in retail outlets.

“The Society is also working on telebanking and internet banking systems to enhance customer service and is pleased with the successful launch of its website,” Beverley said.

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