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Here are 2 risks threatening UOB

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Asset quality deteriorates quicker than expected.

According to Barclays, economic and credit growth in the ASEAN region outside of Singapore remains robust, driven by domestic consumption and government spending. Barclays looks for management to reiterate its regional expansion plan.

Here's more from Barclays:

UOB is the most diverse ASEAN footprint (Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia account for 26% of total loans) and is best placed to win intraregional loan market share.

UOB is not immune to margin pressure but we believe it can deliver on increasing fee income from loans, investments, trade, wealth and its cards business. We reiterate our OW rating.

Key downside risks include: 1) worse-than-expected margin deterioration from intense loan pricing competition and slowing corporate activity; and 2) pick-up in credit costs as asset quality deteriorates quicker than expected (SMEs ~20-25% of total loans).  

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