(Reuters) - British lender Paragon Banking upgraded its 2022 forecasts on Tuesday, after posting a 49% rise in half-yearly profit, as it sees strong growth in new lending.
The London-listed company said statutory profit before tax jumped 49% to 143.6 million pounds ($174.96 million) for the six months ended March 31, from 96.4 million pounds a year earlier.
The West Midlands-headquartered company said its new lending levels were up 32.2% at 1.49 billion pounds from a year ago.
The company forecast net interest margin expansion, the main measure of a bank's profitability, to increase to more than 20 basis points, from 5 basis points it had expected earlier.
It also upgraded its outlook for commercial and mortgage lending advances and increased buyback to 75 million pounds.
($1 = 0.8207 pounds)
(Reporting by Radhika Anilkumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)