China's BoCom Q1 profit up 4.9 pct, bad loan ratio dips

BEIJING/SINGAPORE, April 29 (Reuters) - China’s Bank of Communications Co Ltd (BoCom) posted a 4.9 percent rise in its first-quarter net profit as bad loan ratio and interest margins improved.

Profit at China’s fifth-biggest bank rose to 21.07 billion yuan ($3.13 billion) in the three months through March, from 20.09 billion yuan in the same period a year earlier, the bank said in a filing on Monday.

That was slightly an average estimate for a 5.2 percent increase from three analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.

BoCom’s non-performing loan ratio was at 1.47 percent at end-March, down from 1.49 percent at end-December.

Net interest margin, a key gauge of profitability, rose to 1.59 percent by end-March from 1.51 percent at end-2018. ($1 = 6.7336 Chinese yuan) (Reporting By Cheng Leng in BEIJING and Shu Zhang in SINGAPORE; Editing by Himani Sarkar)