Japan's big 3 financial groups post robust profits

Net profits at Japan's three biggest financial groups surged in the first half of the fiscal year. Bottom lines were boosted by smaller reserves set aside for bad loans.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group booked record net income for the April-to-September period of just over 780 billion yen, or about 6.8 billion dollars, up 95 percent in yen terms from a year earlier.

Mizuho Financial Group's net profit jumped 78.9 percent. Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group's rose 68.8 percent.

The groups had prepared for the possibility that loans would default as the coronavirus battered the economy.

But there were fewer bankruptcies than expected, partly because of government support. That allowed the groups to free up cash.

All three have revised up their net profit forecasts for the full year through March, saying the economy is set to recover.