NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Bear Stearns Cos. Inc. said Monday its fiscal third-quarter profit leaped 22.6 percent, citing high levels of new security issues and rebounding markets that are attracting more clients.
The investment bank's net income for the quarter ended March 26 totaled $204 million, or $1.42 per share. That handily surpassed the $1.15 per-share estimate of earnings tracker First Call Corp.
In the year-ago period, Bear Stearns earned $166.3 million, or $1.09 per share.
Revenue for the quarter totaled $1.23 billion, a 17.1 percent rise over the 1998 period, the company said.
The results follow a dismal first quarter, but a better-than-expected second quarter. For the first nine months of fiscal 1999, the company earned $404 million, or $2.63 per share, a 17.2 percent decrease from $488 million, or $3.21 a share, a year earlier.
"With the continued rebound in the markets and our client-driven approach to running our franchise, we were able to far surpass the earnings reported for the first and second quarters," President and CEO James E. Cayne said in a statement.
The company said investment banking revenues grew 16 percent to $229 million for the quarter, primarily due to a big boost in its underwriting business. Commission revenues rose 8.4 percent to $245.1 million.
Shares in Bear Stearns (BSC) closed up 5/8 at 49-5/8 on the New York Stock Exchange Friday.