Bank of China's annual profit falls for first time in decade

* BoC 2016 FY profit falls 3.67 pct

* NIM falls to 1.83 pct in Q4 from 1.85 pct in Q3

* NPL ratio falls to 1.46 pct end-Dec from 1.48 pct end-Sept

(Recasts, adds earnings details, context)

SHANGHAI/BEIJING, March 31 (Reuters) - Bank of China Ltd

(BoC) , the country's fourth-largest lender

by assets, on Friday reported a fall in full-year profit for the

first time in over a decade, the only one of China's "Big Five"

banks to do so.

The most international of China's largest listed state-owned

lenders, BoC follows the other four banks that reported earnings

earlier this week in posting its lowest interest margin since at

least 2011, due to successive central bank interest rate cuts

between 2014 and 2015.

For 2016, net profit fell 3.67 percent to 164.58 billion

yuan ($23.89 billion) from 170.85 billion yuan a year earlier.

The compression in net interest margin - the difference

between interest earned on loans and interest paid out to

depositors - continued in the fourth quarter, falling to 1.83

percent from 1.85 percent at the end of September.

For just the fourth quarter, net profit fell about 24

percent to 29.8 billion yuan, missing analyst estimates of 32

billion yuan.

BoC's non-performing loan ratio was 1.46 percent as at the

end of December, from 1.48 percent three months prior.

($1 = 6.8904 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Engen Tham in SHANGHAI and Matthew Miller in

BEIJING; Editing by Christopher Cushing)