Bank of Ayudhya Q4 net profit surges, meets forecasts

BANGKOK Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:07am EST

BANGKOK Jan 18 (Reuters) - Thailand's fifth-largest lender, Bank of Ayudhya, part-owned by General Electric, reported a surge in quarterly net profit on Friday, in line of with forecasts, due to continued growth in its retail lending.

The bank made a net profit of 3.75 billion baht ($126 million) for the October-December quarter, up 663 percent from 492 million baht a year earlier, when the sector was hit by severe flooding.

Nine analysts polled by Reuters had an average earnings forecast of 3.7 billion baht for the quarter.

For 2012, the bank posted net profit of 14.6 billion baht, up 57 percent from a year earlier.

Bank of Ayudhya, leader in the Thai retail and consumer lending business, is in focus after GE sold about a quarter of its stake in late September, cutting its holding in the bank to 25.3 percent.