Royal Bank of Canada reported a first-quarter profit of $3.5 billion, in a Feb. 21, 2020 story. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Royal Bank reports $3.5B first-quarter profit, raises quarterly dividend

TORONTO — Royal Bank of Canada raised its dividend as it reported a first-quarter profit of $3.5 billion.

The bank says it will now pay a quarterly dividend of $1.08 per share, up from its previous payment to shareholders of $1.05 per share.

RBC says its profit amounted to $2.40 per diluted share for the quarter ended Jan. 31 compared with a profit of nearly $3.2 billion or $2.15 per diluted share in the same quarter a year earlier.

The bank says its adjusted diluted cash earnings per share for the quarter amounted to $2.44.

Analysts on average had expected an adjusted profit $2.31 per share, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

The bank says the results were driven by record earnings in capital markets as well as strong earnings growth in its personal and commercial banking operations. It also saw growth in wealth management and insurance, partially offset by lower results in investor and treasury services.

“These results reflect the underlying strength of our diversified business mix, our focused strategy, and our colleagues’ unwavering commitment to creating more value for clients as we position the bank for the future,” RBC chief executive Dave McKay said in a statement.

“Against the uncertain macroeconomic backdrop, we remain focused on prudently managing our risks, leveraging our scale and competitive position, and balancing our investments in technology and talent for long-term, sustainable growth.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 21, 2020.

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