April 30, 2018 / 8:57 AM / 20 days ago

India's Kotak Mahindra Bank fourth-quarter profit up 15 percent on lending growth

MUMBAI (Reuters) - India’s Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd reported a 15 percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit on higher interest and fee incomes and as its bad loans fell.

FILE PHOTO - A man walks past the Kotak Mahindra Bank branch in New Delhi, India, September 6, 2017. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi/File Photo

Net profit rose to 11.24 billion rupees ($169.34 million) for the three months ended March 31 from 9.76 billion rupees a year ago, the Mumbai-based bank, fifth-biggest among the country's private sector lenders, said in a statement. here

That was in line with analysts’ expectations of 11.29 billion rupees net profit for the lender, which is 30 percent owned by its billionaire chief executive Uday Kotak, who is Asia’s richest banker.

Kotak Mahindra’s gross bad loans as a percentage of total loans dropped to 2.22 percent as of end-March from 2.31 percent in the preceding quarter and 2.59 percent a year ago.

Net non-performing loans, after provisions, were 0.98 percent of total loans as of end-March.

Net interest income for the quarter rose 19 percent from a year ago to 25.8 billion rupees as loans as of end-March grew 25 percent from a year earlier.

Net interest margin, however, fell to 4.35 percent in the March quarter from 4.63 percent a year earlier.

Kotak Mahindra shares, which hit their all-time high earlier in the session, were trading 1.8 percent higher by 0854 GMT in a Mumbai market that was up 0.44 percent.

The bank is the second most valuable listed lender in India, with a market capitalisation of about $35 billion and ahead of India’s biggest lender, State Bank of India. ($1 = 66.3750 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Vishal Sridhar and Devidutta Tripathy, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Muralikumar Anantharaman

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