UPDATE 1-Laurentian Bank profit rises; boosts dividend

TORONTO, June 2 Thu Jun 2, 2011 10:25am EDT

TORONTO, June 2 (Reuters) - Laurentian Bank of Canada (LB.TO) reported a 6 percent rise in second-quarter profit on Tuesday, as a moderation in loan losses more than offset the impact of higher costs.

Net income in the quarter rose to C$30.1 million ($30.7 million), or C$1.13 a share, from a year-ago profit of C$28.3 million, or C$1.06 a share.

Analysts, on average, had forecast earnings of C$1.19 a share according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Shares of Laurentian fell 1.5 percent to C$50.90 on the Toronto Stock Exchange Thursday morning.

Montreal-based Laurentian said it maintains a cautiously optimistic view regarding the outlook for the Canadian economy in the second half of 2011 and going into 2012.

"The Canadian economy has clearly benefited from the strong rebound in global trade currently underway, including a marked upturn in U.S. industrial production. Although current economic momentum is constructive, there is still anticipation of a moderation in growth later this year in Canada," the bank said.

Laurentian raised its quarterly dividend payout by 8 percent to 42 Canadian cents a share.

The bank expects to meet its full-year profitability objective of between C$4.80 and C$5.40 a share. (Reporting by Euan Rocha; editing by Rob Wilson)

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