Commonwealth Bank’s half-year benefit slides after property market stoppage

Commonwealth Bank’s first-half money benefit has fallen 2.1% to $4.68bn, overloaded by Australia’s moderating property markets.

Two days after the royal commission report lashing banking culture, Australia’s biggest bank said on Wednesday that cash profit for the six months to 31 December fell from $4.87bn in the prior corresponding period after revenue fell 1.9% to $12.41bn.

The benefit was lower than anticipated by examiners, in spite of the fact that it was 1.7% higher once discontinued operations including the local insurance businesses it sold to AIA are stripped out.

Volume development was balanced by a lower net interest margin because of the expanded expense of financing loans, rivalry and clients changing from higher-edge speculator and intrigue just mortgages to cheaper owner-occupier and principal and interest loans.

Clients have been exchanging as banks tighten lending standards and raise the expense of less secure advances in light of regulatory intervention and the cruel light of the financial services royal commission..

“The housing market transition is a rational outcome of the lending policy changes introduced over a number of years, especially following an extended period of outpaced growth in some markets,” the chief executive, Matt Comyn, said.

Hazard, consistence and remediation costs hopped to $221m from $100m per year sooner, albeit total expenses dropped 3.1% because of the Austrac money-laundering penalty and different costs occurring in the prior corresponding period.

Comyn, who took on the top job when the Austrac scandal led to Ian Narev’s retirement, said CBA would continue to address its failings.

“There is much work ahead as we understand the implications and implement the recommendations of the royal commission,” Comyn said.

“We are already making the necessary changes and will be a better bank as a result.”

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