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March 31, 2017

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Tighter interest margin hits ICBC’s net

THE Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the country’s biggest lender by assets, posted a 0.4 percent net profit growth in 2016, slower than the 0.5 percent profit rise in the previous year, on tighter interest margin.

ICBC made a net profit of 279.11 billion yuan (US$40.5 billion) last year, according to filings to the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges.

The lender’s total assets rose 8.7 percent year on year to 24.14 trillion yuan.

Net interest income, the main indicator of a bank’s profitability, shed 7.1 percent to 471.85 billion yuan, as the banking regulator cut the key interest rate six times in a row from 2014 to 2015, the report showed.

ICBC lent 23 percent more in new loans, totaling 74.14 billion yuan last year.

Its non-performing loan ratio was flat at 1.62 percent at the end of December, with total non-performing loans at 211.8 billion yuan.

China Construction Bank, the country’s second-largest lender by assets, said on Wednesday that its net profit rose 1.45 percent in 2016, helped by its loan business and a nearly 12 percent cut in operating cost.

CCB’s full-year net profit was 232.4 billion yuan, up from 228.2 billion yuan a year earlier.

Its NPL ratio fell to 1.52 percent at the end of last year from 1.58 percent a year earlier.

Ping An Securities Co analyst Li Yamin predicted CCB will gain from growing loans for infrastructure projects in 2017.


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