By Trevor Hunnicutt
July 31 LPL Financial Holdings Inc, the largest U.S. independent brokerage network, reported on Wednesday that second-quarter profit jumped 14 percent on increased revenue from commissions and advisory services.
Net income rose to $45.1 million, or 42 cents per share, from $39.5 million, or 35 cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding unusual costs related to debt extinguishment, acquisition expenses and employee compensation, it earned 61 cents a share, while analysts, on average, looked for 60 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Net revenue rose 12.2 percent to $1.02 billion, beating analysts' expectations of $999.1 million.
LPL Financial also said it will raise its quarterly dividend by 40 percent to 19 cents per share. The dividend will be paid on Aug. 30.
Boston-based LPL Financial sells technology, clearing and other services to self-employed brokers, who keep the bulk of the fees and commissions they generate but pay their own expenses.
The company said the addition of new advisers as well as an increase in their productivity drove commission revenue up 13.7 percent to $508.4 million from the year-ago period. The company's headcount increased by 32 advisers from the prior quarter to 13,409.
Rallying equity markets and $3.7 billion in new asset flows drove up overall client assets by 12.4 percent to $396.7 billion. Assets in the brokerage's fee-based advisory programs rose 18.9 percent to $132.4 billion.
Advisory revenue on the assets grew 11.1 percent to $298.1 million.