An Empirical Study into Comparing Conventional and Islamic Banks in the UAE

Keywords: Islamic Banking; Conventional Banking; Interest-Free; Profit-And-Loss Sharing; Financial Ratios.


Banking system constitutes the fundamental pillar of every economy. Banks acts financial intermediaries between sectors that have excess funds and those that are in deficit. Islamic banks operate under Sharia principles of risk sharing and interest prohibition as contrasted with conventional banks that buy capital to pool funds and sell capital to generate interest income or profit. This paper applies banks’ internal factors related to their balance sheet and income statement and using a total of 23 financial ratios pertaining to the internal factors, it attempts to compare and contrast between conventional and Islamic banks. This research explains the structure, operation and management of banks in the UAE coupled with the functioning of Islamic banks. The paper also aims to determine the profitable and efficient banks among the chosen sample. The sample includes 12 banks, equally distributed between Islamic and conventional banks using data between the periods of 2014 - 2018. The sample is broadly categorized based on profitability ratio, efficiency ratio, asset indicator ratio and risk ratios. Correlation and Regression analysis is used to determine a substantial ratio analysis between conventional and Islamic banks. Results from the study reveal indicators of financial characteristics such as profitability ratios, efficiency ratios, asset quality indicators and risk/ risk management ratios. The results clarify that Islamic banks are operationally efficient and profitable because of risks sharing and greater dependency on deposits capital. However, on an overall basis, the ratios indicate conventional banks have higher scores than their counterparts.

JEL Classification Codes: F37.          

Author Biography

Manoj Kapur, SP Jain School of Global Management, India

DBA Research Scholar

SP Jain School of Global Management, Mumbai, India

E-mail: [email protected]


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Annual Financial Statement of the Conventional and Islamic banks in the UAE

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Al Hilal Bank (AHB), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Commercial Bank Dubai (CBD), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Emirates Islamic Bank (EIB), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Emirates NBD (ENBD), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB), 2016, 2017, 2018
First Gulf Bank (FGB), 2014, 2015
Mashreq Bank, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), 2014, 2015
Noor Bank (Noor), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
RAK Bank (RAK), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
How to Cite
Kapur, M. (2020). An Empirical Study into Comparing Conventional and Islamic Banks in the UAE. International Journal of Accounting & Finance Review, 5(2), 11-31.
Regular Research Article/ Short Communication Article