07/14/2015 08:57 EDT | Updated 07/14/2016 01:12 EDT

JPMorgan 2Q profit rises 4 per cent to $5.78 billion; beating analysts' expectations

NEW YORK — JPMorgan Chase & Co. said Tuesday that its second-quarter profit rose 4 per cent from a year earlier, as the bank continued to trim expenses and notched a solid performance at its investment banking division.

The largest U.S. bank by assets earned $5.78 billion after payments to preferred shareholders, up from a profit of $5.57 billion a year earlier. On a per-share basis, the bank earned $1.54 per share, compared with $1.46 per share a year earlier.

JPMorgan's investment bank posted net income of $2.34 billion in the quarter, up 10 per cent from a year earlier. While revenue was down in both its trading and investment banking advisory business, the bank was able to trim expenses to make up for the revenue declines. JPMorgan has been selling off parts of its business, like its physical commodities business, to comply with stricter regulatory requirements.

The bank saw solid growth in its consumer banking division as well, with net income of $2.53 billion, up 1 per cent, helped by lower expenses. The bank saw higher sales and loan growth in its auto and credit card division, which helped the bottom line as well.

JPMorgan and other banks have been trimming down their balance sheets and selling off businesses for several years now. Headcount at the bank in the quarter was 237,459, down 3 per cent from a year ago. Legal expenses, which had been a major issue for the bank in the past few years, also declined in the quarter.

The overall earnings results beat analysts' expectations. The average estimate of financial analysts surveyed by FactSet was $1.43 per share. That estimate typically excludes one-time items.

Net revenue at the bank totalled $23.81 billion, compared with $24.68 billion in the same period a year earlier.

JPMorgan is the first of the six "big banks" to report their results this week and next. Wells Fargo, which also reported Tuesday, reported results that matched analysts' estimates but like JPMorgan saw lower revenue compared to a year ago.

Shares of JPMorgan rose 1 per cent in premarket trading.

Ken Sweet, The Associated Press