Kiwibank has posted 53 per cent rise in half-year earnings on the back of growing interest income and market share gains in the wake of the ANZ-National merger.
The New Zealand Post-owned lender said net profit for the six months ending December 31 came in at $58 million, up from $38m in the previous period - the highest level since the global financial crisis.
Chief executive Paul Brock said he was pleased by the bank's performance, with the earnings now looking to have entered into an upward track after bottoming out at the end of 2010.
Income from loans rose $19m to $400m compared to the previous period, with total lending on homes, business banking and credit card up by 6 per cent to $12.8 billion.
Customer deposits meanwhile grew 5 per cent to $12.3b as the Kiwibank picked up market share from the ANZ-National merger and natural customer attrition.
That left it with net income revenue of $140m and total operating revenues of $227m, once $87m in other earnings from subsidiary businesses are factored in.
Operating expenses rose 11 per cent in the period to $147m, which Brock said was largely related to firm's strategy to target the small business banking segment, and investing in the transactional channels needed to cater for this segment, such as online and mobile banking.
Efforts to reduce bad debts also paid off in the period, with Kiwibank's ratio of impaired assets to gross loans and advances falling to 0.43 per cent from 0.67 per cent. That was lower than the equivalent ratio of ANZ, ASB, BNZ and Westpac in their interim results.
Kiwibank now holds about 10 per cent of the personal banking market, a gain of about 1 percentage compared to last year, a pace Brock hopes to maintain over the next few years.