United Bank of India said it has recorded a net loss of Rs 1,238.08 crore for the December quarter, as against a net profit of Rs 42.2 crore a year ago. The loss has been largely on account of sticky assets emerging from special audits being conducted at the instruction of the banking regulator. The bank has been restrained by the Reserve Bank of India from making more than Rs10 crore in loans to any single borrower. It had to put aside Rs 1,857.83 crore in the December quarter towards NPAs, over four times the amount it provided for bad loans in the same period a year ago. The bank’s NPA levels are approaching historic highs in the Indian banking industry with gross NPA at 10.82%, which is the highest since Bank of Baroda reported 11.42% gross NPA 10 years ago. The net NPA is 7.44% which is the second highest after Dena Bank’s 7.85% in September 2004. Cleaning-up of the bank’s books started in the September quarter, when the bank provided Rs 987.35 crore towards NPAs and reported a gross NPA of 7.52% and a net NPA of 5.39%. In the three-month period till September, it registered a net loss of Rs 489.47 crore. Annualized return on assets has since turned negative, worsening from 1.61% at the end of September to 3.92% at the end of December.