The data suggests increasing pressure on banks’ margins in the seasonally active quarter, as banks continue competing for clients. Also, the upcoming CBR measures to limit consumer lending, which also include a stricter limit on maximum deposit rates through higher payments to the Deposit Insurance Fund starting 2013, might push some smaller banks to be more active in attracting retail deposits from the market through elevated interest rates.
Meanwhile, we note that the high cost funding is likely to be one of the major negative factors in the coming quarters weighing on banks’ profitability. In our view, the first signs of weaker margins could be reflected in the 3Q12 results, as can be seen in the V-bank numbers. To recap, Sberbank is due to report on 5 December and Bank St Petersburg the following day.