BEIJING, Aug 30 (Reuters) - Agricultural Bank of China Ltd (AgBank) reported on Wednesday a 3.3 percent rise in first-half net profit as margins steadied.
AgBank said net profit for the first six months of the year totalled 108.6 billion yuan ($16.48 billion), versus 105.1 billion yuan a year ago.
This implies a net profit of 52.9 billion yuan for the second quarter, up 4.8 percent from 50.5 billion yuan a year ago. Four analysts on average had forecast a profit growth of 2 percent for the quarter, according to data compiled by Reuters.
AgBank’s non-performing loan ratio fell to 2.19 percent by end-June, from 2.33 percent at end-March.
Net interest margin, the difference between interest paid and earned by banks and a key gauge of profitability, narrowed slightly to 2.24 percent by end-June, from 2.25 percent at the end of last year. ($1 = 6.5916 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting By Engen Tham and Matthew Miller; Additional reporting by Shu Zhang; Editing by Himani Sarkar)