Negligent clients a source of considerable revenue for the Russian banks

Business daily Vedomosti.ru quotes one of the banking industry analysts, stating that the Russian banks earned approximately 57.8 billion rubles (USD 1.92 billion) in penalty fees in 2012. While for some banks the growth of penalty fees corresponds to their asset growth, others record a disproportionate growth in respective revenues that can be explained by the growth of unsecured consumer loans and non-performing loans. Some industry experts even presume that there are banks that deliberately focus on a group of less disciplined customers in order to generate higher fee income.

At the same time, the banks that focus on corporate lending register a decline in respective fees, having done their best to get rid of bad loans. This group contains some the largest banks in the market, including the largest: Sberbank, VTB, Alfa-bank. In addition, there are some specific cases: Bank Moskvy was forced to book additional penalties after the audit found a large volume of bad loans provided to entities related to the bank’s former President Andrey Borodin (it is doubtful that the bank will ever collect them, though); Rosselhozbank (Russian agricultural bank) also generated a large amount of penalty fees due to its unusually high percentage of non-performing loans – 10.7 percent, almost three times the industry average.

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