MUMBAI, Jan 17 (Reuters) - HDFC Bank, India's third biggest lender by assets, posted yet another quarter of slowing quarterly profit on weaker loan growth and fee income.
HDFC Bank has been a sector outperformer posting consistent profit growth and stable asset quality in recent years, and is among the 'top picks' for most brokerages. Until the quarter-ended September, it had reported quarterly profit growth exceeding 30 percent, for the last decade.
On Friday, the bank posted a 25 percent increase in net profit to 23.26 billion rupees ($377.84 million) from 18.59 billion a year ago. Net interest income, the difference of interest earned and paid out, gained nearly 16 percent to 46.35 billion rupees.
On average, analysts had expected the bank to post a net profit of 23 billion rupees, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Asset quality at the bank remained mostly stable during the quarter. Non-performing loans as a percentage of total assets were at 0.3 percent, HDFC Bank said.
Earlier this week, smaller rivals Yes Bank and Axis Bank posted more than 19 percent increase in December quarter net profit.
$1 = 61.5600 Indian rupees Reporting by Swati Pandey; Editing by Sunil Nair