April 29, 2019 / 9:01 AM / 20 days ago

China's BoCom first-quarter profit up 4.9 percent, bad loan ratio dips

FILE PHOTO: People walk past the Bank of Communications at its central branch in the financial district of Hong Kong August 19, 2009. REUTERS/Aaron Tam/File Photo

BEIJING/SINGAPORE (Reuters) - China’s Bank of Communications Co Ltd (BoCom) posted a 4.9 percent rise in its first-quarter net profit as bad loan ratio and interest margins improved.

Profit at China’s fifth-biggest bank rose to 21.07 billion yuan ($3.13 billion) in the three months through March, from 20.09 billion yuan in the same period a year earlier, the bank said in a filing on Monday.

That was slightly an average estimate for a 5.2 percent increase from three analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.

BoCom’s non-performing loan ratio was at 1.47 percent at end-March, down from 1.49 percent at end-December.

Net interest margin, a key gauge of profitability, rose to 1.59 percent by end-March from 1.51 percent at end-2018.

($1 = 6.7336 Chinese yuan)

Reporting By Cheng Leng in BEIJING and Shu Zhang in SINGAPORE; Editing by Himani Sarkar

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