Bank of China Q1 profit up 13.9 pct, beats estimates

SHANGHAI, April 24 Thu Apr 24, 2014 5:04am EDT

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SHANGHAI, April 24 (Reuters) - Bank of China (BoC) , the country's fourth-largest lender by market value, said on Thursday first-quarter net profits rose 13.9 percent, beating estimates, as net interest margins widened and capital adequacy rose.

Net profit rose to 45.4 billion yuan ($7.28 billion) in the first quarter, up from 39.8 billion yuan in the same 2013 period, according to the bank's unaudited financial statement.

Total capital adequacy rose sharply to 12.95 percent, compared to 12.46 percent at end-December last year.

That compares with an average estimate of 41.8 billion yuan calculated from a Thomson Reuters poll of eight analysts.

BoC's non-performing loan ratio increased slightly to 0.98 percent at end-March compared to 0.96 percent at end-December.

Net interest income was 76.5 billion yuan in the first quarter, a year-on-year increase of 14.2 percent while gains in net fees and commissions hit 29.0 billion yuan, a rise of 17.1 percent from the same period last year.

The bank's net interest margin was 2.29 percent at the end of the first quarter, from 2.24 percent at the end last year. ($1 = 6.2376 Chinese Yuan) (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom and Gabriel Wildau; Editing by Miral Fahmy)

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