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Australia's Commonwealth Bank annual net profit up 13%

Australia's biggest bank, the Commonwealth, on Wednesday (Aug 12) posted a 13 per cent jump in full-year net profit to a record A$8.63 billion (US$8.0 billion) with gains across each of its core divisions.

SYDNEY: Australia's biggest bank, the Commonwealth, on Wednesday (Aug 12) posted a 13 per cent jump in full-year net profit to a record A$8.63 billion (US$8.0 billion) with gains across each of its core divisions.

The country's top home lender and biggest company by market capitalisation said net profit for the 12 months ending June 30 was up from A$7.68 billion the year before, above analyst expectations. Cash profit - the bank's preferred measure which strips out one-off costs - was A$8.68 billion, up 12 per cent.

"This year we have again struck a balance between the group's short-term and long-term priorities," said chief executive Ian Narev. "At the same time as delivering a 12 per cent increase in cash earnings, and a strong return on equity, we reinvested A$1.2 billion into the business."

He said most of this was targeted at the bank's long-term strategic priorities - "people, technology, strength and productivity". Narev added that the bank was "cautiously positive" about the outlook for the 2015 financial year.

"Whilst business and consumer confidence levels have remained fragile, the levels of underlying activity confirm the strong foundations of the Australian economy," he said.

A final dividend of A$2.18 was declared, an increase of nine percent.

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