HDFC Bank, India`s second-biggest lender by assets, reported a slightly smaller-than-expected 20 percent rise in quarterly net profit, hurt by higher provisions for bad loans.
Indian banks are battling slower loan growth as companies are yet to restart projects they stalled during an economic downturn. Banks have also been hit by higher provisions and regulatory scrutiny as bad loans in the sector reached a record $150 billion last December.
HDFC Bank`s provisions, including for bad loans, surged nearly 80 percent to 15.59 billion rupees ($241.93 million) in the first quarter ended June 30, India`s most-valuable bank said on Monday. Provisions for specific loan losses rose about 61.4 percent to 13.43 billion rupees. (http://bit.ly/2uONcnF)
Net profit rose to 38.94 billion rupees in the quarter ended June 30, versus 32.39 billion rupees a year ago, but missed an average estimate of 39.38 billion rupees from 21 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.
Gross non-performing loans as a percentage of total loans hit 1.24 percent at end-June, from 1.05 percent at end-March.
HDFC Bank, which has the lowest bad loans among India`s leading banks, said 60 percent of the total increase in gross non-performing assets was related to the agricultural sector.
Its net interest income rose 20.4 percent to 93.71 billion rupees, with a core net interest margin of 4.4 percent.
Shares of the bank, valued at more than $68 billion, were up 1.6 percent by 0713 GMT. The stock has risen over 40 percent this year, outperforming the main market index and the sector index.
($1 = 64.4375 Indian rupees)
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