NAB has posted a flat cash profit of $3.29 billion in a half-year result that is largely in line with analyst predictions, but bad and doubtful debts edged up 5 per cent to $394 million.
NAB’s cash earnings for the half-year to 31 March 2017 was $3.29 billion, up 2.3 per cent compared to the March 2016 half-year.
Statutory net profit for the bank was $2.55 billion compared to a loss of $1.74 billion for the prior corresponding period.
On a cash earnings basis, revenue increased 1.8 per cent largely due to stronger trading income, and expenses rose 0.8 per cent reflecting in part “higher personnel costs including redundancy charges”.
The total charge for bad and doubtful debts was $394 million, up $19 million or 5.1 per cent, reflecting an increase in the collective provision for risks relating to the bank’s commercial real estate portfolio.
UBS analysts said in a note that the result was “broadly in line [with expectations] with very few surprises”.
UBS described the result as “clean and flat albeit boosted by stronger trading incomes”, resulting in an unchanged valuation and price target of $30.