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A Canara Bank branch in Bengaluru.IBT Media/S V Krishnamachari

Four Indian state banks reported on Friday a combined net loss of Rs 117.29 billion ($1.74 billion) for the fiscal fourth quarter due to a jump in bad-loan provisions following a tightening of the Reserve Bank of India rules.

Bengaluru-headquartered Canara Bank Ltd, the biggest of the four, said its net loss was Rs 48.6 billion for the three months to March 31, compared with a net profit of Rs 2.14 billion a year earlier.

Allahabad Bank reported a net loss of Rs 35.1 billion and UCO Bank a Rs 21.34 billion loss. Dena Bank, the smallest of the four, made a net loss of Rs 12.25 billion.

Indian banks, already burdened by a near-record Rs 9.5 trillion of soured loans as of last year, were expected to report a further rise in bad loans in the March quarter after the central bank withdrew half a dozen loan-restructuring schemes and tightened some rules in February.

New Delhi owns majority stakes in 21 lenders that account for the bulk of the sector's bad loans, forcing the government to announce a $32 billion bailout package to help the lenders set aside funds for the soured loans and kickstart new lending.

Canara Bank's gross non-performing loans as a percentage of total loans rose to 11.84 percent at the end of March, compared with 10.38 percent in the preceding quarter and 9.63 percent a year earlier. Provisions for non-performing assets almost tripled from a year earlier to Rs 87.63 billion.

Allahabad, UCO, and Dena also saw their bad loans and provisions for bad loans rise sharply in the quarter.

Union Bank of India, also state-run, reported on Thursday a Rs 25.83 billion net loss for the fourth quarter.

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People wait to enter a bank in Mumbai, India, November 15, 2016.Reuters file

Top state lenders State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, Bank of Baroda and Bank of India are due to report fourth-quarter results in the coming days.