India’s largest bank SBI posts record profit, announces dividend
State Bank of India (SBI.NS), the country’s largest lender by assets, on Friday posted a record quarterly profit, helped by lower provisions for bad loans, and announced its first dividend in four years.
Net profit rose 80% to 64.51 billion rupees ($883.09 million) for the three months ended March 31, from 35.81 billion rupees a year earlier, SBI said in a regulatory filing. Analysts had expected a profit of 61.47 billion rupees, according to Refinitiv IBES data.
SBI announced a dividend of 4 rupees per share, its first payout since May 2017, when it had rewarded shareholders with 2.6 rupees per share.
The lender reportedly received a windfall of nearly 40 billion rupees as part of dues owed by bankrupt steelmaker Bhushan Power and Steel.
Provisions for bad loans slid 16.6% to 99.14 billion rupees.
Most Indian banks have reported strong numbers for the final quarter of the last financial year on a lower base and as retail lending picked up before the second coronavirus wave. Collections and credit growth have since been hit and lenders are now on a “wait-and-watch” mode.
SBI shares, which had risen about 40% this year by last close, pared some gains after the results, and were last up 0.8% as of 0823 GMT.
($1 = 73.0500 Indian rupees)
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