2 Nov 2015

Westpac reports $916m profit

3:31 pm on 2 November 2015

The New Zealand arm of Westpac Bank has reported a full year profit of $916 million, up 6 percent on a year ago, on the back of solid growth in deposits and lending.

The bank, which has about a 20 percent share of the local market, has reported a lift in its margins and a slight fall in the cost of doing business.

Westpac's local income was up 7 percent on a year ago, just ahead of the rise in its operational costs.

Its deposits rose 5 percent and its lending was up 7 percent, but the key measure of its performance, the net interest margin, edged higher and it is in the same territory as those reported by rivals the BNZ and ANZ last week.

The bank's bad debts also nearly doubled, reflecting the economic slowdown and tougher dairy sector, but at just $47 million, it was not a major item.

Westpac also reported it increased its share of the credit card market with its deal offering Air New Zealand airpoints on transactions.

The Westpac group reported a profit of $A8 billion.

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