The Commonwealth Bank is heading to a full-year record profit.
Australia’s biggest bank today released unaudited results for the third quarter, showing cash earnings of approximately $2.4 billion.
In February the bank posted a record first-half cash profit of $4.9 billion, up 2.1%.
If the bank repeats the latest March quarter result in the final quarter, it will end the year with $9.7 billion in cash profit and ahead of the 2016 result of $9.45 billion.
The bank says the latest result was supported by income growth, continued cost discipline and sound credit quality.
“In home lending, growth continued to be underpinned by strong proprietary channel performance,” the bank says.
“Business lending growth overall remained subdued, with strongest growth in Business and Private Banking.”
The Net Interest Margin was slightly lower due to higher competition.
In the 12 months to March, deposits grew 6.6%, home lending 7.8% and business lending 3.7%.
Loan impairments fell in the quarter, as this chart shows:
Loan impairment expense of $202 million equated to 11 basis points of Gross Loans compared to 17 basis points in the first half of 2017.
“Consumer arrears increased in line with seasonal expectations and continued to be elevated in Western Australia,” the bank says.
“In the home lending portfolio, investment lending reduced as a proportion of total new lending in +the quarter and new interest only lending is being closely managed, consistent with regulatory guidance.”