This is Handelsbanken
Handelsbanken was founded in 1871. The Bank has a nationwide branch network
in Sweden, the UK, Norway, Denmark, Finland and the Netherlands. We have
a decentralised way of working with a strong local presence and a long-term
approach to our customer relations. Our goal is to have better profitability than
the average of peer competitors in our home markets. We mainly achieve this
goal by having more satisfied customers and lower costs.
branches in our
six home markets.
was founded in
than the sector average in
all six of our home markets.*
SATISFIED CUSTOMERS IN ALL
SIX HOME MARKETS
Every year, EPSI Rating – which includes SKI
(Swedish Quality Index) – carries out independ-
ent surveys of customer satisfaction. This year’s
surveys showed that Handelsbanken has more
satisfied private and corporate customers than
the average for the banking sector in all six of the
Bank’s home markets.
In addition, the survey shows that Handels-
banken’s customers are significantly more loyal
than the customers of other competitors, and
that they give the Bank’s digital services high
marks. The fact that digital customer meetings
are perceived positively is important for fostering
long-term, strong customer relationships, and
contributes to reinforcing the Bank’s strong
position in terms of customer satisfaction.
In Sweden, Handelsbanken has had the most
satisfied private customers for 30 years running,
according to SKI.*
HANDELSBANKEN’S CREDIT RATING
IS TOP OF GLOBAL BANKS
No other bank in the world has a higher rating
than Handelsbanken in terms of bank ratings from
Fitch, Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s.
The Bank’s newly formed UK subsidiary,
Handels banken Plc, has been assigned the same
high rating as Handelsbanken by Fitch and
Standard & Poor’s.
CONTINUED ORGANIC GROWTH
Satisfied customers result in more business.
Which is why Handelsbanken is a growing bank.
In total, the average volume of loans to the public
increased by 5 per cent, while the average volume
of deposits from the public increased by 6 per
cent. Business volumes increased during the year
in all six home markets: in the UK, lending grew by
5 per cent and deposits grew by 10 per cent; in
Norway, the corresponding increases were 5 and
8 per cent, respectively; and in Denmark, 3 and
5 per cent, respectively. In Finland, lending rose by
4 per cent while deposits grew by 5 per cent, and
in the Netherlands, the average volume of lending
increased by 14 per cent while the average volume
of deposits was up by 18 per cent. But it is not just
in our home markets outside Sweden that Handels-
banken is growing.
In Sweden, where Handelsbanken was founded
in 1871, 2019 was another year marked by growth
and large inflows of new business volumes – in
terms of both savings and lending. For the third
consecutive year, Handelsbanken was the largest
player for new savings on the mutual fund market
in Sweden. New savings in the Bank’s mutual funds
in Sweden amounted to SEK 27 billion, equivalent
to a market share of just over 21 per cent, to be
viewed in the light of the Bank’s share of the total
managed volume in the Swedish mutual fund mar-
ket, of 11.2 per cent. At the same time, Handels-
banken’s market share of household deposits in
* According to EPSI Rating/SKI (Swedish Quality Index). Since SKI surveys started in 1989, Handelsbanken has had the most
satisfied private customers among the four major Swedish banks – Handelsbanken, Nordea, SEB and Swedbank.
HANDELSBANKEN | ANNUAL REPORT 2019 1
Highlights of the year
Operating profit fell by 1 per cent to
SEK 21,796 million (22,013). Adjusted for
foreign exchange effects, non-recurring
items and special items, operating profit
grew by SEK 55 million.
Return on equity decreased to
11.9 per cent (12.8).
The period’s profit after tax declined by
2 per cent to SEK 16,925 million (17,357).
Earnings per share decreased to
SEK 8.65 (8.93).
Income grew by 2 per cent to SEK 44,564
million (43,770). Adjusted for foreign
exchange effects and non-recurring
items, income increased by 3 per cent.
Net interest income rose by 3 per cent
to SEK 32,135 million (31,286).
Net fee and commission income rose by
4 per cent to SEK 10,697 million (10,247).
Expenses rose by 4 per cent to SEK
-21,743 million (-20,890). Adjusted for
foreign exchange effects, non-recurring
items and special items, expenses grew
by 5 per cent.
The C/I ratio rose to 48.8 per cent (47.7).
Adjusted for foreign exchange effects,
non-recurring items and special items,
the C/I ratio was 48.3% (47.3).
The credit loss ratio was 0.04 per cent
The common equity tier 1 ratio
increased to 18.5 per cent (16.8).
The Board proposes a dividend of
SEK 5.50 per share (5.50), and that the
existing mandate to repurchase shares
is extended for a further year.
Average growth in equity
Adjusted equity per share
Accumulated dividends since 2008 * Including dividends.
Total return since the start of the financial crisis
30 June 2007–31 December 2019
Source: SNL, as at 31 December 2019 (dividends reinvested).
2 HANDELSBANKEN | ANNUAL REPORT 2019
Handelsbanken’s Annual General Meeting 2020
Location: Grand Hôtel, Winter Garden, Stallgatan 4, Stockholm.
Time: Wednesday, 25 March 2020 at 9:30 a.m.
Notice of attendance
Shareholders wishing to attend the AGM must be entered in the register of shareholders kept by
Euroclear Sweden AB, by Thursday, 19 March 2020 at the latest. Notice of attendance is to be made
to handelsbanken.com/en/about-the-group/annual-general-meeting, telephone +46 8 701 19 84 or
to Handelsbanken Group Governance, SE-106 70 Stockholm, Sweden, by Thursday, 19 March 2020
at the latest.
To be entitled to take part in the meeting, shareholders whose shares are nominee-registered must
also request a temporary entry in the register of shareholders kept by Euroclear. Shareholder must
inform the nominee of this well before Thursday, 19 March 2020, by which date this entry must have
The Board proposes that the record day for the dividend be Friday, 27 March 2020, which means that
Handelsbanken’s shares will be traded ex-dividend on Thursday, 26 March 2020. If the meeting resolves
in accordance with the proposal, Euroclear expects to distribute the dividend on Wednesday, 1 April 2020.
Financial calendar 2020
5 February Highlights of Handelsbanken’s Annual Report 2019
25 March Annual General Meeting
22 April Interim report January – March 2020
15 July Interim report January – June 2020
21 October Interim report January – September 2020
The following reports can be downloaded or ordered from handelsbanken.com/ir:
• annual reports
• interim reports
• risk and capital management reports
• corporate governance reports
• fact books
• sustainability reports.
The Annual Report can be ordered from Investor Relations, phone +46 (0)8 701 10 00 or at
Handelsbanken’s Sustainability Report 2019
In addition to Handelsbanken’s Annual Report 2019, Handelsbanken also publishes a separate Sustain-
ability Report. The Sustainability Report is a separate publication covering activities and results in 2019.
The report is prepared in accordance with the ‘Core’ level of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Stand-
ards for sustainability reporting and has been examined by the Bank’s external auditors. Handelsbanken
reports the Group’s sustainability activities annually, and the Sustainability Report provides information
about the entire Group, unless otherwise stated.
The report constitutes Handelsbanken’s Communication on Progress for the
UN Global Compact.
Handelsbanken’s statutory sustainability reporting can be found on pages 43 to 61
of this Annual Report. A more detailed report on the Bank’s sustaina