To give Barclays Africa some credit, it has been the first bank to release its interim results to June. It did so less than a month after the June half year. Nedbank needs a few more days, but the accounting boffins at Standard Bank need almost three more weeks to put out the results. And FirstRand, for all its boasting about superior technology, needs a further month after that. Perhaps they need a few new calculators.

Barclays Africa must have been tempted to delay these results, however. They can’t be called disappointing, as market expectations are low. The dividend yield is a generous 7.2%, so you are paid more as a shareholder than you would be as a client. Total income was down 1% to R36bn, though it would have been up 2% on a constant currency basis. A strong rand led to a 6% fall in the income from the rest of Africa. Finance director Jason Quinn says the introduction of caps on consumer finance interest rates in Kenya dampened loan growth, as did similar, though less extreme, caps in SA.

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