The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the country's biggest lender, eked out a five percent gain in net profit last year in the face of "complex" domestic and overseas environments, it said Thursday.
Net profit was 275.81 billion yuan ($45.21 billion) in 2014, up from 262.65 billion yuan a year earlier, ICBC said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange, where it is listed.
The bank cited China's slowing economic growth and a rebound in bad debts as having an impact on its operations.
The country's gross domestic product growth of 7.4 percent last year was the slowest in nearly a quarter of a century, prompting the government to loosen monetary policy by cutting interest rates in November.
"We conquered many difficulties such as narrowing interest spread as a result of interest rate liberalisation, drainage of traditional business... and increasing market competition and increasing loss of financial resources due to rebounding NPLs," the bank said, referring to non-performing loans.
The bank's NPL ratio reached 1.13 percent by end-December, up from 0.94 percent a year earlier, according to the statement, due to slowing economic growth and the "pain" of economic restructuring.
China's leaders have embraced a "new normal" of slower growth while at the same time attempting to carry out structural reforms to reduce dependence on state spending as the main driver for the economy.
ICBC is one of China's "Big Four" state-owned banks. Its stock closed unchanged in Hong Kong on Thursday before the release of the annual results and rose 0.64 percent in Shanghai, where it is also listed.
Another major bank, the Bank of China, said Wednesday that its net profit rose more than eight percent last year, helped by expanding overseas business.
The Agricultural Bank of China, which has traditionally served rural areas, said earlier this week that its net profit rose 7.9 percent year-on-year in 2014, hampered by the weak domestic economy.