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Singapore bank DBS beats expectations on Q4 profit but NPL charges jump

:The DBS Group Holdings Ltd. logo is displayed atop the company's DBS Asia Hub building in Singapore, on Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012.
Munshi Ahmed | Bloomberg | Getty Images
:The DBS Group Holdings Ltd. logo is displayed atop the company's DBS Asia Hub building in Singapore, on Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012.

DBS, Singapore' biggest lender, posted a 20 percent rise in quarterly profit that beat expectations, as its net interest margin rose to a five-year high.

DBS's net profit came in at S$1 billion ($711 million) in the three months ended December, versus S$838 million a year earlier and above an average forecast of S$978 million from six analysts polled by Reuters.

Its charges for non-performing loans and other assets climbed 17 percent to S$247 million from a year earlier, part of a trend for the city-state's lenders that reflects slowdowns in Asian economies and tough times for the oil and gas sector.

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