Driven by higher net interest income, Punjab National Bank on Thursday announced a 15.9 per cent rise in net profit at Rs.1,075 crore for the quarter ended September 30 against Rs.927 crore in the same quarter of the previous fiscal.

Net interest margin (NIM) crossed 4 per cent to 4.06 per cent during the second quarter. The rise in profit was on account of strong growth in advances leading to a sharp rise in net interest income (NII), bank Chairman and Managing Director K. R. Kamath told reporters here.

Net interest income during the quarter improved by 49.4 per cent to Rs.2,977 crore from Rs.1,992 crore in the same quarter in the same period a year ago.

Advances grew by 27.6 per cent to Rs.2,08,764 crore by the end of September 30, 2010.

The bank's total income rose by 18.1 per cent to Rs.7,174 crore during the quarter.

On deposit rate hike, he said there was a pressure on deposits but the bank was not going to raise the rates immediately. The bank increased deposit rates twice in the last three months.

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