ASB profits up 28% on improving NZ economy

ASB bank has posted an after tax net profit of $568 million for the year to June 30, a 27.6% rise on the equivalent figure of $445 million for the year earlier.

Chairman Gavin Walker said in a statement the result was due to the improving New Zealand economy.

"New Zealand is continuing along the road to recovery from the global economic downtown. Clear evidence of this is the significant reduction in ASB's impairment charges over the year, down 42.4% to $72 million," he said.

Other highlights from the results include a 7.1% increase in retail deposits to $33.7 billion in a flight by investors from the collapsed finance company sector.

Operating income increased 12.8% to $1.6 billion, and net interest margin fattened by 0.4% to 2.08%.

ASB is owned by Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

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