Yes Bank net profit jumps 29% in March quarter as loan book swells

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Midsize private sector lender YES Bank on Thursday reported a 29 per cent surge in the March quarter net at Rs 11.8 billion bolstered by high loan growth and a dip in dud loans which boosted its core interest income. For the fiscal year 2018-19, its net profit rose 26.9 per cent to Rs 42.2 billion.

At a time when the system is content at achieving a low double-digit credit growth, YES Bank’s credit growth stood at an impressive 53.9 per cent, which was the primary reason for pushing its net interest income up in the reporting quarter by 31 per cent to 
Rs 21.5 billion.

Reflecting the hardening of the bond yields since last November, the non-interest income grew by a slower 13 per cent to Rs 14.2 billion.

Managing director and chief executive Rana Kapoor said credit growth has been broad-based, coming from both corporate and small medium businesses segments and added the reporting quarter saw doubling of its retail loan book, which now constitute 12 per cent the loan book. Kapoor said it is targeting to take it up to 40 per cent by March 2020.

On the asset quality front, the gross non-performing assets ratio narrowed to 1.28 per cent 1.72 per cent.

The bank also made a disclosure on divergences, or under-reporting of NPAs that had bloated the dud asset pile in the preceding quarter.

Of the over Rs 60. billion of under-reporting discovered by the regulator for FY17, 38 per cent has seen a recovered, 21 per cent has become standard, 11 per cent has slipped into NPAs while the remaining has turned into a security receipts post sale to asset reconstruction companies, Kapoor said.

The overall provisions increased to Rs 399 crore from Rs 309 crore and Kapoor said the bank is targeting to trim down credit cost to 0.50-0.70 per cent range for the fiscal 2019 from 0.76 per cent recorded in FY18.

It is also targeting to increase its provision coverage ratio to 60 per cent from 50 per cent now.

The bank had minimal impact from the change in NPA recognition norms introduced on February 12 this year, he said, adding the emergence of frauds has led it to classify the gems & jewellery sector to the list of sensitive sectors.

He said the bank is focusing on increasing its market share in the current times, when a majority of lenders are fraught with internal issues like frauds, NPAs etc.

On its exposure to the troubled Fortis Healthcare, Kapoor said the total due is over Rs 1,500 crore and has been classified as "standard" in its books and added it has sufficient securities to cover the exposure.

The bank has an exposure of Rs 440 crore to the Anil Ambani group's Reliance Naval, whose auditors yesterday had raised concerns on the viability of its business as a "going concern", Kapoor said, stressing that it has adequate securities in the account.

Net interest margin was almost stable at 3.4 per cent for the reporting quarter, while the share of low-cost Casa deposits grew to 36 per cent.

Even though it is well-capitalised with an overall buffer of over 18 per cent, the bank board has decided to raise up to USD 1 billion in core equity, Kapoor said, adding it may consider raising the money by the end of the FY19 if it sees some opportunities for its use.

Investors lapped up the yes Bank counter with the scrip rallying 8.26 per cent to Rs 352.05 on the BSE as against gains of 0.62 per cent on the benchmark. 

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