India’s Bajaj Finance jumps most in two years as profit tops estimates

BENGALURU, July 28 (Reuters) – Shares of Bajaj Finance (BJFN.NS) on Thursday surged 10%, the most in more than two years, after the non-bank lender’s quarterly profit blew past estimates on strong customer additions and lower bad loan provisions.

The company on Wednesday said its profit more than doubled to 25.96 billion rupees ($325.37 million), beating expectations of 24.41 billion rupees, as loan loss provisions slid 57%.

Bajaj Finance said it was focusing on protecting its margins, amid increasing competition in the sector.

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“The company has started increasing pricing across products gradually from June 2022,” it said in a statement, adding new loans booked surged 60.3% from a year earlier.

“Customer acquisitions and new loans trajectory has been strong and the momentum will only get stronger with the digital ecosystem – app, web platform and the full-stack payment offerings,” Motilal Oswal analysts said in a note.

Bajaj Finance said it was on track to offer all products and services on app by January 2023.

Management’s guidance of achieving 4 trillion rupees in assets under management (AUM) looks strong and we expect significant loan growth acceleration on the back of steady economic growth, Morgan Stanley analysts wrote in a note.

At the end of the June-quarter, AUM was up 28% at 2.04 trillion rupees.

Shares of Bajaj Finserv (BJFS.NS), Bajaj Finance’s holding company, climbed 9.2% after it approved a bonus share…

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