The Mint Report for 12 August 2010

The Mint Report for 12 August 2010

India’s biggest bank has beaten all forecasts. On Thursday State Bank of India reported a 25% increase in first quarter profits to Rs2,914 crore. Net interest income shot up 45% to Rs7,304 crore. But the bank’s net non-performing assets also rose to 1.7% from 1.55% in last year’s first quarter. Indian banks have been helped in recent months by a growing economy that has reduced loan defaults. The RBI says that in July, India’s bank credit grew nearly 20% on a year on year basis.

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The road’s cleared for Mahindra and Mahindra to acquire Ssangyong Motor. On Wednesday the Korean SUV maker picked Mahindra as its preferred buyer. Mahindra outbid rivals including Renault and India’ Ruia Group to clinch the deal. Managing director Anand Mahindra says the acquisition will help his company expand its presence in global market for utility vehicles. Mahindra expects the deal to be completed by the end of the year. Just how much Mahindra will pay is unknown.

New government figures show India’s factory output has slowed down in June. After eight months of growing at double-digit rates, the index of industrial production grew at just 7.1% during the month. In May the index grew 11.3%. Much of the slowdown was led by capital goods and basic goods. Some economists have told Mint the slowdown was caused by an unusual spurt in demand came to an end and because the base effect was fading away. But others say the withdrawal of stimulus packages has contributed to lower demand.