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Updated: Fri, 12 Apr 2013 08:56:02 GMT | By Steve Rothwell, The Associated Press, thecanadianpress.com

Wells Fargo first-quarter profit surges 22 per cent

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Wells Fargo, the nation's biggest mortgage lender, said its first-quarter profit surged 23 per cent after the bank cut expenses.


Wells Fargo first-quarter profit surges 22 per cent

In this Dec. 19, 2012 photo, a man walks past a Wells Fargo location in Philadelphia. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Matt Rourke

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Wells Fargo, the nation's biggest mortgage lender, said its first-quarter profit surged 23 per cent after the bank cut expenses.

Net income available to common shareholder rose to $4.93 billion from $4.02 billion a year earlier.

On a per-share basis, earnings were 92 cents, beating the 89 cents forecast by Wall Street. Revenue slipped 2 per cent to $21.3 billion and missed expectations.

Wells Fargo was little known outside the Western U.S. before scooping up a teetering Wachovia in the depths of the financial crisis in 2008. The bank has turned a profit every quarter since 2009, the year it wrapped up its acquisition of Wachovia.

The Federal Reserve said last month that Wells Fargo passed its annual checkup, a "stress test" to measure how a bank would fare in a severe recession. The Fed cleared the bank to raise its quarterly dividend by a nickel to 30 cents per share.

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