State Bank of India (SBI) has given enough reasons to cheer in its first quarter performance. Not only has India’s largest lender managed to bring down its bad loans, its outlook on them is not alarming as expected.
SBI reported a 81% year-on-year jump in its net profit and loads of help came from the stake sale in its life insurance subsidiary. That does not negate the fact that its core income grew at an impressive 16%. While the 7.6% loan growth may seem low, it is no chump change on a balance sheet size of ₹41.17 trillion.
Keeping in trend with peers, SBI’s moratorium levels also declined sharply to 9.5% as of June from about 30% three months ago. Chairman Rajnish Kumar said moratorium does not necessarily suppress slippage ratios and that the bank has not witnessed any big behaviour changes among borrowers. This outlook should comfort investors at a time when most banks have sounded conservative on asset quality.