India’s IndusInd Bank beats Q4 profit view on strong loan growth, lower provisions

BENGALURU (Reuters) – Indian private lender IndusInd Bank reported a bigger-than-expected rise in fourth-quarter profit on Monday, helped by strong loan growth and drop in provisions for bad loans.

The Mumbai-based lender’s standalone net profit, which excludes results of unit Bharat Financial Inclusion, jumped 50% to 20.41 billion rupees ($249.02 million) in the quarter ended March 31.

Analysts on an average expected a profit of 19.9 billion rupees, as per Refinitiv IBES data.

Provisions dropped 29.5% to 10.30 billion rupees, the company said in an exchange filing.

Loan demand for many Indian banks have seen double-digit growth even as the country’s central bank persistently raised interest rates.

Earlier this month, IndusInd Bank said its quarterly net advances – loan growth – increased by 21%, while its deposits grew 15%.

The company’s gross bad loans as a percentage of total loans — a measure of asset quality – improved to 1.98% at the end of March, from 2.06% at the end of December. Its net NPA ratio also fell to 0.59% from 0.62%.

Net interest income, the difference between interest earned and paid, was up 17% at 46.69 billion rupees, while the private lender’s net interest margin widened to 4.28% from 4.20% from a year earlier.

Last week, HDFC Bank, India’s biggest private lender, reported a 19.8% rise in quarterly profit, while, ICICI Bank’s profit jumped 30%, helped by improved net interest income and loan growth. Yes Bank’s net profit dropped 44.9% on higher provisions.

IndusInd Bank’s board on Monday also recommended payment of dividend of 14 rupees per share, subject to requisite approvals.

Shares of IndusInd Bank rose as much as 2.2% after results, now trading at 1.8% lower.

($1 = 81.9600 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Anuran Sadhu in Bengaluru; Editing by Sohini Goswami)