Compared with the Steinhoff and Resilient shipwrecks, Capitec Bank has coped remarkably well with criticism from short seller Viceroy. After Viceroy accused it in January 2018 of some aggressive accounting around its personal loans, its share price fell almost 28% over barely a week to R785 a share. It has now bounced back, to R1,185 a share as the FM went to press. Harry Botha, banking analyst at Avior Capital, says Capitec critics failed to consider the bank’s credit risk relative to its profitability. "They are very disciplined in terms of their return on equity target when issuing a loan." And Capitec is moving towards lower-risk customers, through its Global One credit card and longer-dated loans. No less than 60% of new credit is granted to customers earning R15,000 a month or more, and 70% of credit applications are declined. Capitec CEO Gerrie Fourie says even though loan growth has been muted he is confident the bank will repeat the success of the previous three years when ...

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