Laurentian Bank boosts dividend as earnings rise

MONTREAL — Laurentian Bank is boosting its quarterly dividend as its second-quarter profit increased 4% to $35.1 million.[np_storybar title=”Why it’s dangerous to short the Canadian banks” link=””%5DCanada’s big banks are in the awkward situation of pulling in near-record profits while also facing a record bet that they are heading for a fall. Read more [/np_storybar]The Quebec-based bank said Wednesday its dividend will increase by one cent per share to 50 cents, payable Aug. 1.Laurentian earned $1.10 per share for the period ended April 30, compared to $1.22 per share a year earlier when its net income was $33.9 million.Adjusted for one-time items, net income was $40.5 million or $1.29 per share. That compared to $36.1 million or $1.31 per share in the year-ago period.Revenues increased 8% to $214.8 million, from $198.7 million a year earlier.The acquisition of AGF Trust contributed $18.8 million of revenues.Net interest income increased 9% to $140.4 million, reflecting loan and deposit growth from the purchased portfolios of AGF Trust, partly offset by lower margins.Other income increased $4.1 million to reach $74.4 million due to higher fees and commissions.The provision for loan losses increased by $1.5 million to $9 million. That included $2.5 million related to the AGF Trust loan portfolios.

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