Laurentian Falls Most in 2 Years on Profit Miss: Montreal Mover

Laurentian Bank of Canada, the country’s seventh-largest lender, fell the most in more than two years after posting fourth-quarter profit that missed estimates.

Laurentian fell 4.6 percent to C$44.98 at 4 p.m. in Toronto, the biggest decline since June 3, 2011. Shares of the Montreal-based lender have gained 1.7 percent this year, trailing the 13 percent advance of the eight-company Standard & Poor’s/TSX Commercial Banks Index.

Net income for the period ended Oct. 31 fell 40 percent to C$27.2 million ($25.7 million), or 86 cents a share, from C$45.7 billion, or C$1.51, a year earlier, the bank said today in a statement. Profit excluding some items was C$1.14 a share, missing the C$1.31 average estimate of seven analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. The bank raised its quarterly dividend 2 percent to 51 cents a share.

Results were “a strong miss against consensus -- continued margin pressures and flat loan growth, further weighed by worse than expected credit performance,” Joseph Ng, a Barclays Plc analyst, wrote today in a note.

Profit was pared by C$6.3 million of restructuring costs and C$10 million in expenses tied to last year’s purchase of a trust unit of AGF Management Ltd. and its November 2011 acquisition of two units from Mackenzie Financial Corp., according to the statement.

Laurentian cut 302 full-time employees, or 7 percent of its workforce, between the end of July and the end of October, the bank said.

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