UPDATE 1-Australia's CBA doubles cash profit on easing loan impairments
Adds details on results, background
May 12 (Reuters) - Commonwealth Bank of Australia CBA.AX said on Wednesday its third-quarter cash profit doubled as a rapid economic recovery spurred robust lending and enabled the country's largest bank to reverse some bad debt provisions made during the pandemic.
Australia's control over the pandemic, near-zero interest rates and government spending has allowed its banks to recover quicker than their global peers and move funds set aside for potential COVID-19 losses back into profits.
CBA, which follows a different reporting calendar than its rivals, said it booked a loan impairment benefit of A$136 million in the quarter, compared with a A$1.6 billion loan impairment expense last year.
It lowered its total credit provisions to A$6.5 billion at the end of March, from A$6.8 billion at the end of December.
Cash net profit after tax from continuing operations at the bank rose to A$2.4 billion ($1.88 billion) for the three months ended March, from about A$1.2 billion a year earlier. nAZN015R9H
The Sydney-based lender said its troublesome and impaired assets were A$7.8 billion at the end of March, lower than the A$8.2 billion it had on its books three months earlier.
($1 = 1.2755 Australian dollars)
(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)