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In six months, Commonwealth Bank spent $1.2B on IT services

In six months, Commonwealth Bank spent $1.2B on IT services

Bank's investment increased by 58 per cent from previous half-year results

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) has increased IT services spend for the first half of 2017 by 58 per cent, reaching close to $1.2 billion during six months.

Announced via the ASX, the results come as part of the organisation's half year financial results ending 31 December 2016.

The company’s IT services expenses are a marked increase from its previous half year figures, ending 30 June 2016.

That half year saw its IT services spend total to $733 million, 58 per cent less than its spend this half year.

According to the company, the expenses this half year increased as a result of the "one-off expense" stemming from the acceleration of amortisation on certain software assets.

It added that underlying expenses increased by four per cent from the previous half year due to higher software licensing, lease, and amortisation costs, partly offset by a reduction in investment spend.

Comparing the results of 1H17 to the same period last year, CBA’s IT services spend increased by 54 per cent and its underlying expenses increased by one per cent.

Across the board, the company also reported a statutory Net Profit After Tax (NPAT) of $4.89 billion, up six per cent from same time last year and a cash NPAT of $4.9 billion, up two per cent from same time last year.

CBA also identified that, going forward, technology will be on the forefront of its agenda.

With 5.8 million customers now using digital (making up 53 per cent of total transactions) and having 80 per cent of its logins via mobile, the bank is on the way to reaching its goals.

Mid last year, CBA CEO, Ian Narev, said that his organisation would be ‘toast’ within 10 years if it didn’t innovate.

“Our contribution to Australia’s economic growth must continue to be the combination of strength and innovation that has served Australia well through global volatility.

"So we will continue to manage our balance sheet, and our expenditure, conservatively,” Narev said.

“But we will also continue to invest confidently so we can play our part in the bright future that we see for Australia.”

In comparison, the Bank of Queensland (ASX:BOQ) reported in October last year that it has seen its IT expenses increase to $92 million for the year ending August 2016 – a 12 per cent rise on the $82 million in IT expenses it cited the previous year.

Westpac (ASX:WBC), in November last year, pointed to software maintenance and licence costs increases after seeing its annual tech expenses rise by $171 million, reporting technology-related expenses of $1.9 billion for the financial year ending September 2016.

At the time of writing, CBA's shares were trading at $84.66.

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Tags financial resultsIT spendingCBACommonwealth Bank of Australia

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