Indian digital payments firm Paytm posted a wider loss in the fiscal fourth quarter on Wednesday, hurt by weakness in its payments and lending business after the central bank asked the company to wind down its banking unit.

The company's consolidated net loss widened to 5.5 billion rupees ($66.08 million) from 1.68 billion rupees a year ago.

It was expected to post a net loss of 3.99 billion rupees in the reporting quarter, a median of three analysts showed, as per LSEG data.

Paytm wrote down the value of its entire investment in Payments Payment Bank Ltd (PPBL) worth 2.27 billion rupees, considering "future uncertainties" over the latter's business operations, it said in an exchange filing.

The Reserve Bank of India, in late January, had ordered PPBL to stop accepting fresh deposits in its accounts or digital wallets from March due to non-compliance with norms.

"Our Q4 FY 2024 results were impacted by temporary disruption on account of UPI (Unified Payments Interface) transition etc and permanent disruption because of PPBL embargo," Paytm said in an exchange filing.

One of India's first fintech firms to go public, Paytm said its consolidated revenue from operations fell to 22.67 billion rupees for the January-March quarter from 23.35 billion rupees a year earlier.

Revenue from the payments business, which contributes roughly 69% to the total, rose 7% on-year but was down 9% sequentially due to disruption of banking unit products, the company said.

Following the RBI's strictures, a number of lending partners halted loans given out via the platform, impacting its ability to earn fee income.

The value of loans distributed fell 54% to 57.99 billion rupees, the company said.

Revenue from its financial services business, which includes the loan business, fell 36% in the fourth quarter.

However, the company, which had also paused a few other payments and loan products to customers during the quarter, said that many such products had been restarted or were in the process of starting soon.

Paytm's shares fell 1.5% post results and have lost about 54% since the RBI's payment unit shutdown order.

($1 = 83.2275 Indian rupees) (Reporting by Dimpal Gulwani in Bengaluru and Siddhi Nayak in Mumbai; Editing by Janane Venkatraman and Nivedita Bhattacharjee )