SYDNEY (AP) - Westpac Banking Corp., one of Australia's largest banks, has posted an 11 percent rise in half-year profit to 3.3 billion Australian dollars ($3.4 billion) as it pursued growth opportunities for deposits.
The Sydney-based bank's profits for the six months to March 31 announced Friday were up from AU$2.9 billion for the same period a year earlier.
Westpac chief executive Gail Kelly said the results showed the benefits of the bank's strategy of targeting high growth opportunities in the sector.
She said in a statement, "The operating environment continues to be challenging, with subdued lending growth."
Australian banks proved resilient against the global economic downturn and remain among a handful of banks in the world to maintain AA credit ratings.