BEIJING, Aug. 13 (Xinhua) -- Huaxia Bank, a mid-sized Chinese lender, ground out a meager profit gain in the first half of this year as stronger financial regulation put pressure on banks.
The bank posted a 0.1-percent year-on-year increase in net profits, which totaled 9.8 billion yuan (about 1.5 billion U.S. dollars) in the first half, according to a statement it filed to the Shanghai Stock Exchange.
Growth was much slower than the 6-percent profit rise seen in the same period of last year.
The slowdown came after Chinese authorities stepped up regulation to deleverage the financial sector early this year in order to fend off risks and curb asset bubbles.
Huaxia Bank saw its bad loan ratio edge up 0.01 percentage point from six months earlier to 1.68 percent by the end of June, according to the statement.
Operating revenue rose 6.9 percent year on year to 33.3 billion yuan, with revenue from intermediary business such as asset management jumping 33.3 percent to nearly 10 billion yuan.
By the end of June, the bank's total assets rose 2.8 percent from six months earlier to 2.4 trillion yuan, according to the statement.