Operating earnings remain high
Precautionary reserves strengthened once again
Successful issue of the bank’s first Green Pfandbrief
Following another successful financial year in 2017, Deutsche Hypothekenbank is reporting a result from normal operations of € 62.7 million (previous year: 115.0). Strong business development in the bank’s core business area, reflected in a stable earnings base and the very good risk result, was the main factor behind this positive result. The extraordinarily high previous-year result was attributable in particular to write-ups on receivables and securities of Heta Asset Resolution AG.
“We look back at financial year 2017 with satisfaction. Despite increased competitive pressure, we generated a respectable result that is slightly above our expectations and our average results over the past five years. We were again able to hold our ground in all our target markets,” Sabine Barthauer, Member of the Board of Managing Directors of Deutsche Hypo, emphasised upon publication of the Annual Report. “It is also worth noting that the quality of our financing portfolio continued to improve and that we were able to once again strengthen our precautionary reserves on top of that.”
New business at just under € 3.8 billion
As in previous years, Deutsche Hypo focused on entering into high-quality financing transactions only. Including long-term extensions, new business volume amounted to € 3,798.3 million (2016: 4,540.7) and was therefore in line with the bank’s expectations. Germany was once again at the centre of the regional focus. Newly concluded domestic financing reached a volume of € 2,180.9 million (2016: 2,832.1). At € 1,617.4 million (2016: 1,708.6), new business abroad almost matched the previous year’s figure. Deutsche Hypo generated the highest volume in the Benelux region with € 488.6 million (2016: 652.5), the UK with € 466.1 million (2016: 749.3) and France with € 399.7 million (2016: 113.3). At € 1,338.5 million (2016: 973.7), retail was the dominant asset class, followed by office at € 1,198.8 (2016: 2,010.4). Residential financing volume fell year on year to € 554.2 million (2016: 871.3).
The commercial real estate financing portfolio grew slightly to € 12,077.1 million (2016: 11,977.0). To strengthen its sales activities, the bank opened offices in Berlin and Madrid in 2017. As a result, Deutsche Hypo is now represented at six domestic and five international locations.
Further capital market portfolio reduction
Net interest income fell to € 193.4 million (2016: 202.1) in the reporting year due to the strategic focus on financing commercial real estate and the associated planned reduction of the capital market portfolio. The reduction of the capital market portfolio also resulted in expenses that had a negative effect on income from securities and participatory interest (€ -10.2 million; 2016: 55.7) while also further improving the portfolio’s risk profile. Net commission income amounted to € 0.3 million (2016: 3.7), whereas other operating income stood at the positive figure of € 4.2 million (2016: -3.5).
Administrative expenses increased to € 83.8 million (2016: 76.4) in 2017 as a result of the strengthening of sales activities, necessary investments in IT infrastructure and the implementation of regulatory requirements. Against this backdrop, the cost-income ratio rose to 42.3 % (2016: 37.8).
Low risk result thanks to focus on quality
Deutsche Hypo’s quality-oriented business policy led once again to an extremely low risk result of € -5.7 million (2016: 2.8) in the core commercial real estate finance business area. The bank’s overall risk result of € -41.3 million (2016: -66.6) was influenced to a large extent by a further significant strengthening of precautionary reserves in accordance with Section 340f of the German Commercial Code (HGB).
Deutsche Hypo’s competitive conditions in the real estate finance business are attributable to its successful funding activities. In 2017, the bank issued unsecured bonds in the amount of € 2,198.3 million (2016: 2,138.2) and mortgage Pfandbriefe in the amount of € 1,328.0 million (2016: 1,800.0). The issue of the bank’s first Green Pfandbrief with a volume of € 500 million attracted the most attention. The benchmark issue, which was oversubscribed by more than twofold, allowed Deutsche Hypo to attract a large number of new investors.
“Promising financing transactions in the deal pipeline”
“We are optimistic when it comes to financial year 2018 and expect a result approximately on par with the previous year, despite the continued intense competition in commercial real estate financing. There are a few promising transactions in our deal pipeline right now,” Barthauer said with confidence. “The entire industry continues to benefit from the positive economic conditions and the brisk demand for commercial real estate in Germany and in Europe’s leading real estate markets. It continues to appear unlikely that the current boom will cool down in 2018.”