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Rating Action:

Moody's affirms China CITIC Bank International's Baa1 ratings and revises outlook to stable

09 Oct 2017

Hong Kong, October 09, 2017 -- Moody's Investors Service has today affirmed China CITIC Bank International Limited's (CNCBI) Baa1 long-term deposit rating and Prime-2 short-term deposit rating.

At the same time, Moody's has affirmed the bank's baa2 baseline credit assessment (BCA) and adjusted BCA, and its A3(cr)/P-2(cr) counterparty risk assessments.

The outlook on CNCBI's ratings is revised to stable from negative. For a list of all affected ratings, please refer to the end of this press release.

The rating action was prompted by the announcement by its parent bank, China CITIC Bank Corporation Limited (deposits Baa2 stable, BCA ba2) (CITIC Bank), on 30 September 2017, of CNCBI's plan to raise HKD9.053 billion (about $1.2 billion) in capital from five financial investors. After the capital injection, China CITIC Bank will remain the controlling shareholder of CNCBI with a stake of 75%. The transaction is expected to close at the end of this year once all approvals have been obtained.

RATINGS RATIONALE

The affirmation of CNCBI's baa2 BCA reflects the bank's overall credit profile together with its enhanced capital position after the capital injection. Despite challenging operating conditions, the bank has maintained sound solvency and liquidity profile, resulting in easing pressure on its credit worthiness.

The bank's capitalization level is modest, when compared with its rated peers in Hong Kong, with tangible common equity (TCE) / risk-weighted assets (RWA) of 12.4% at end-June 2017. The capital injection will provide an immediate boost to its capital adequacy. The amount of capital to be raised is equivalent to about 400 basis points of the bank's risk-weighted assets at end-June 2017.

The bank's funding profile has improved. Customer deposits grew by 7.4% during the first six months of 2017, with current accounts and savings accounts amounting to 33% of total customer deposits at end-June 2017, up from 29% at end-2016. Nonetheless, we expect the TCE/RWA ratio to return to below 14% over the next two years as a result of rapid loan growth. In view of the bank's strengthened cross-border collaboration with its parent bank, we expect its corporate loan exposure will likely grow faster than the system average in 2017 and 2018. The bank's future growth and modest profitability will weigh on its capitalization.

The credit benefits of the improved capitalization are also discounted by the ongoing deterioration of CNCBI's asset quality, given the risks associated with the bank's growing mainland exposures. CNCBI's overall impaired loan ratio was 1.39% at end-June 2017, up from 0.96% at end-2016 mainly due to lending associated with a few specific Mainland customers. The bank's non-bank mainland exposures, as indicated, continue to increase and accounted for 46% of the its total assets at end-June 2017.

CNCBI's deposit ratings incorporate one notch of government support uplift, given Moody's expectation of a moderate likelihood of indirect support from the mainland Chinese government (A1 stable) that would flow through its parent.

After the capital injection, CITIC Bank will hold 75% equity interests in CNCBI. Given that CITIC Bank will remain as the controlling shareholder of the bank, Moody's continues to factor in one notch of uplift to CNCBI's deposit ratings and senior unsecured debt programme ratings, positioning them at Baa1/(P)Baa1.

The outlook on the bank's ratings has been revised to stable from negative, in line with the stable outlook of the Chinese government and its parent CITIC Bank. There is easing pressure on the bank's credit worthiness given its resilient performance in recent years despite subdued economic growth in Hong Kong.

WHAT COULD CHANGE THE RATING UP/DOWN

The bank's deposit ratings could be upgraded if the parent bank's ratings are upgraded. Given its standalone credit assessments is already three notches above that of its parent, an upgrade is not likely in the near term.

The bank's deposit ratings could be downgraded if government support diminishes or if the parent's ratings are downgraded. Its standalone credit assessment will likely be downgraded if rapid growth in its mainland or overseas exposure results in weakened solvency and liquidity profiles.

PRINCIPAL METHODOLOGY

The principal methodology used in these ratings was Banks published in September 2017. Please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

China CITIC Bank International Limited is headquartered in Hong Kong and reported total assets of HKD328 billion at end-June 2017.

Outlook Actions:

..Issuer: China CITIC Bank International Limited

....Outlook, Changed To Stable From Negative

Affirmations:

..Issuer: China CITIC Bank International Limited

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed baa2

....Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed baa2

....Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed A3(cr)/P-2(cr)

....Long Term Deposit Rating, Affirmed Baa1, Outlook is changed to Stable from Negative

....Short Term Deposit Rating, Affirmed P-2

....Long Term Junior Subordinate MTN Program, Affirmed (P)Ba1

....Long Term Subordinate MTN Program, Affirmed (P)Baa3

....Long Term Senior Unsecured MTN Program, Affirmed (P)Baa1

....Pref. Stock Non-cumulative Preferred Stock, Affirmed Ba2(hyb)

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, Affirmed Baa3

....Long Term Deposit Note/CD Program, Affirmed (P)Baa1

....Short Term Deposit Note/CD Program, Affirmed (P)P-2

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the credit rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular credit rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit support from the primary entity(ies) of this credit rating action, and whose ratings may change as a result of this credit rating action, the associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity. Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures, if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

The first name below is the lead rating analyst for this Credit Rating and the last name below is the person primarily responsible for approving this Credit Rating.

Sherry Zhang
Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
24/F One Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Hong Kong
China (Hong Kong S.A.R.)
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

Minyan Liu
Associate Managing Director
Financial Institutions Group
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Hong Kong Ltd.
24/F One Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Hong Kong
China (Hong Kong S.A.R.)
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 852 3551 3077

No Related Data.
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