OCBC's Q4 net profit up 12 pct, above forecast
SINGAPORE Feb 15 (Reuters) - Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp , Singapore's second-biggest lender, posted a 12 percent jump in fourth quarter net profit due to a rise in fee income and a quadrupling of gains from its insurance unit that offset weak interest margins.
OCBC earned S$663 million ($537 million) in the three months ended in December, compared with S$594 million a year earlier.
The profit was above the S$622 million average forecast of five analysts polled by Reuters.
The group has not announced any special dividend after it profited from post-tax gains of S$1.13 billion in the third quarter following the sale of stakes in conglomerate Fraser and Neave and Asia Pacific Breweries to companies linked to a Thai beer baron.
Chief Executive Samuel Tsien said in a statement OCBC is well placed to pursue new opportunities and drive growth in key geographies and businesses.
Last week, bigger rival DBS Group Holdings reported a net profit of S$760 million for October-December, below an average forecast of S$810 million on weak interest margins. ($1 = 1.2354 Singapore dollars) (Reporting by Saeed Azhar)
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