10/21/2011 06:53 EDT | Updated 12/21/2011 05:12 EST

Continued rebound in lending business boosts General Electric 3Q profits 57 per cent

NEW YORK, N.Y. - GE says its third-quarter profit rose 57 per cent as its lending business continues to rebound.

The industrial and financial giant on Friday reported earnings of $3.22 billion for the three-month period ended Sept. 30. That compares with $2.06 billion a year ago. Per-share earnings declined to 22 cents per share from 28 cents per share because of a large dividend payout to Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway.

Excluding that, GE's operating income was 31 cents per share.

Revenue was flat at $35.4 billion.

Analysts, who typically exclude special charges, expected earnings of 31 cents per share on revenue of $34.8 billion.

General Electric Co., based in Fairfield, Conn., builds everything from jet engines to refrigerators, while its lending arm is involved in variety of businesses including credit cards and real estate