February 1, 2019 / 8:24 AM / 6 months ago

State Bank of India Q3 profit beats estimates

Feb 1 (Reuters) - State Bank of India reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly profit on Friday, as the country’s biggest lender by assets set aside lower provisions for bad loans.

Its net profit was 39.55 billion rupees ($556 million) for the third quarter ended Dec. 31, versus a loss of 24.16 billion rupees a year ago, the bank said in a stock exchange filing here

That compares to a 32.08 billion rupee profit estimated on average by 18 analysts, according to Refinitiv data.

SBI, which accounts for more than a fifth of India’s banking assets, saw its gross bad loans as a percentage of total loans ease to 8.71 percent at end-December, from 9.95 percent in the previous quarter and 10.35 percent in the year-ago period. ($1 = 71.1200 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Himani Sarkar

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