August 28, 2018 / 1:32 PM / in 3 months

UPDATE 1-Profits rise at Slovenian banks as bad loans fall

(Updates with quote, details, background)

LJUBLJANA, Aug 28 (Reuters) - Slovenian banks had a joint net profit of 295.7 million euros ($338.19 million) in the first half of 2018, up from 236 million in the same period last year, the Bank of Slovenia said on Tuesday.

It said banks’ non-performing loans fell to 2.1 billion euros or 4.9 percent of all loans in June, down from 5.2 percent a month before.

“All banks had a profit in the first half of this year. The liquidity position of the banking system remains favourable,” the central bank said, adding that joint balance sheet assets were up 3.3 percent year-on-year.

It also said loans to the non-banking sector increased by 5.6 percent.

Slovenia narrowly avoided an international bailout for its banks in 2013 and the government still controls about 40 percent of the banking sector as some of the biggest banks remain in state hands.

The country is due to sell majority of its largest bank, Nova Ljubljanska Banka (NLB), by the end of the year as Slovenia has obliged itself to sell NLB in exchange for European Commission’s approval of state aid to the bank in 2013. ($1 = 0.8744 euros) (Reporting by Marja Novak, editing by Louise Heavens)

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