Kerala-based Federal Bank on Wednesday reported a 43.5% decline in net profit for the three months ending March to Rs 144.9 crore. The private sector lender had recorded a net profit of Rs 256.6 crore in the same quarter of FY17, the bank said in a press release. It delivered a net profit of Rs 878.85 crore for the financial year ended March 31, 2018 as against Rs 830.79 crore in the previous fiscal. Higher provisioning is a major reason for the lower performance with provisions increasing by almost 200% to Rs 371.53 crore in the fourth quarter, on a year-on-year basis. During the March quarter, the gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of the bank slipped to 3 % of total loans from 2.52 % in the December quarter and 2.33% a year back. Net NPA rose to 1.69% in the quarter ended March 31 as against 1.28 % in the year-ago period. Commenting on the results, Shyam Srinivasan, managing director & CEO, Federal Bank, said, \u201cThe revised framework for resolution of stressed assets, being a new regulation, has impacted our bottom line figure. This is as a result of our accelerated recognition of sensitive assets abiding by the spirit of the revised regulation on stressed asset resolution, which, I am sure, will go far to strengthen and professionalise the banking industry\u2019s capabilities to manage stressed assets. Having turned the corner with respect to recognition of NPAs from the restructured standard book this Q4, the Bank is confident of meeting the expectations of its stakeholders and will start FY19 with significantly lower stress.\u201d Net interest income of the bank increased by 11% to Rs 933.22 crore from Rs 842 crore in the year-ago period.Net interest income (NII) grew by 17.37% from Rs 3,052.65 crore in FY17 to Rs 3,582.81 crore in FY18. Net interest margin (NIM) stood at 3.21% for FY18, the bank said. Backed by high growth rate of 36.05% in corporate advances, the bank said that it crossed the magical figure of Rs 2 lakh crore total business. The bank registered a growth of 19.27% in total business and reached Rs 2,03,949.96 crore as on March 31, 2018, the bank said. The bank also mentions in the earnings statement that it has made gratuity provisions to the tune of Rs 18 crore in Q4 and that a similar amount will be spread over each of the next three quarters with a total of Rs 72 crore.