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Back in June, The Banker, a London-based publication of Financial Times, included Nigeria’s Union Bank in its “Top 1000 world banks 2009” list as one of 13 Nigerian Banks in the sub-Saharan Africa that showed “solidity, resilience and growth during the period under review.” Moreover, it wrote, “Nigerian banks continued to amass Tier 1 capital in calendar year 2008, making them even stronger than last year, when compared with the traditionally dominant South African banks”. This past week, Fitch Global Rating again awarded the Bank a B+ Issuer Default Rating (“IDR”) which measures the “perceived level of support that the Bank would receive from the sovereign by virtue of its well established domestic franchise.” Per the report, Union Bank, one of Nigeria’s largest by total assets, has grown its “relatively diversified” deposit base by 58% FY08, and also holds “acceptable” liquidity levels. Concurrent with its sound retail franchise, the Bank’s market risk is thus “moderate,” Fitch concluded.

JGW

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