HDFC Bank, India's third biggest lender by assets, posted yet another quarter of slowing quarterly profit on weaker loan growth and fee income. HDFC Bank has been a sector outperformer posting consistent profit growth and stable asset quality in recent years, and is among the 'top picks' for most brokerages. Until the quarter-ended September, it had reported quarterly profit growth exceeding 30%, for the last decade.
On Friday, the bank posted a 25% increase in net profit to Rs. 23.26 billion ($377.84 million) from 18.59 billion a year ago. Net interest income, the difference of interest earned and paid out, gained nearly 16% to Rs. 46.35 billion.
On average, analysts had expected the bank to post a net profit of 23 billion rupees, according to Reuters.
Asset quality at the bank remained mostly stable during the quarter. Non-performing loans as a percentage of total assets were at 0.3%, HDFC Bank said.
Earlier this week, smaller rivals Yes Bank and Axis Bank posted more than 19% increase in December quarter net profit.
($1 = Rs. 61.5600 Indian)