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Commonwealth Bank Of Australia Annual Profit Rises, Lifts Dividend - Update

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA.AX) Tuesday reported a strong increase in annual profit, and upped its dividend, as several of the lender's businesses witnessed improved profit.

Annual net profit attributable to equity holders of the bank grew to A$7.677 billion ($6.98 billion) from A$7.090 billion in the previous year.

Cash earnings were A$7.819 billion, up 10 percent from last year.

Segment-wise, Retail Banking Services saw a 13 percent increase in profit at A$3.054 billion, amid an 8 percent increase in total banking income. The business saw continued strong growth in net interest income.

Profit at Institutional Banking and Markets climbed 10 percent to A$1.21 billion. The increase was driven by favourable counterparty fair value adjustments, positive trading performance in Markets, higher Asset Leasing rental income and increased lending fee income.

Profit at the Wealth Management business was A$687 million, up 9 percent from last year, reflecting improved global investment markets and strong investment performance.

Profit climbed 17 percent in New Zealand to A$635 million, amid a strong performance from ASB Bank with improved margins.

For the year as a whole, net banking operating income increased to A$18.171 billion from the previous year's A$17.211 billion.

Total provisions for impairment losses decreased 7 percent to A$4.486 million as at June 30, 2013. This was partly due to a reduction in individually assessed provisions across all portfolios stemming from the settlement and completion of several impaired loans.

For the second half of the year, net profit attributable to equity holders of the bank climbed to A$4.016 billion from A$3.661 billion.

Net banking operating income for the second half of the year advanced to A$9.199 billion from A$8.972 billion in the previous year.

The lender announced a final dividend of A$2.00 per share, up 2 percent from last year. Full year dividend will be A$3.64, up 9 percent on the previous year.

Looking ahead, the company believes that the underlying conditions for its business in 2014 will be similar to those in 2013.

CBA.AX is currently falling 1.2 percent at A$73.60.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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