Bank of China Ltd. profit up 12 percent to $25.7B in 2013

Nathan Andrada – Fourth Estate Cooperative Contributor

Beijing, China (4E) – Bank of China Ltd. reported on Wednesday that its net profit climbed 12 percent last year, which is slightly higher than analysts’ expectations, boosted by higher interest and improved income from fees and commissions.

Net profit for the 12 months ended Dec. 31 stood at 156.91bn yuan ($25.7bn), higher from 139.43bn yuan a year ago.

Bank of China, the country’s fourth-biggest lender by assets, said net interest income rose 10.4 percent to 283.59bn yuan. Noninterest income from credit cards, wealth-management product sales and international trade-related settlement and clearing improved 13.5 percent to 123.92bn yuan.

The bank’s nonperforming loans were at 73.27bn yuan as of the end of last year, compared with 65.45bn yuan in the previous year. As of end-2013, bad loan ratio was 0.96 percent, an increase of 0.95 percent at end-2012.

The amount of bad loans the bank wrote off doubled to 9.096bn yuan from 4.209bn yuan in 2012.

Profits last year were boosted by widening net interest margin, which is the difference between what it pays on deposits and what it charges on loans, to 2.24 percent from 2.15 percent in 2012.

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