Jamaica Best Bank: Scotiabank Jamaica
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Scotiabank Jamaica, the largest of the Caribbean country’s four commercial banks, this year started a five-year strategy to grow its wealth management arm and introduce new products, as well as develop a stronger focus on customer services and improved branch efficiency. The bank, which has 42 branches with solid liquidity and a diversified deposit base, has earmarked $9 million in loans for the tourism and agricultural sectors, which are crucial to the country’s economy. Scotiabank, which has 44% of deposits and 41% of loans in the country, ended last year with impressive results: a 26% return on equity, a strong capital adequacy ratio and a productivity ratio of 52% – non-interest expenses as a percentage of total revenue. That is below the international benchmark ceiling of 60% and the best in Jamaica’s financial sector. The bank has steadily reduced its non-performing loans and greatly increased its performing loans.