Westpac today delivered a 12 per cent rise in net profit to $3.859 billion for the 12 months to 30 September.
Cash earnings were up six per cent to $3.726 billion.
The result reflected an increase in impairment charges to $931 million largely as a result of institutional exposures and increased impaired small and medium business loans. Consumer delinquencies remained modest.
Gail Kelly, Westpac CEO, said the bank’s AA rating and prudent approach to long-term management had positioned it well.
“I am particularly pleased with the second half performance, with cash earnings up three per cent compared to the first half, revenue up five per cent and expenses held to a two per cent increase,” she said.
While Ms Kelly was confident the bank remained in a strong position she conceded it would be a challenging year ahead.
“Lower loan growth in the year ahead is anticipated as consumers and businesses seek to strengthen their balance sheets in the tougher operating environment,” she said.
“Impairment charges are also expected to continue to rise as unemployment moves modestly higher.”
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