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Huntington Bancshares Climbs on Commercial Lending Gains

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July 18 (Bloomberg) -- Huntington Bancshares Inc., the Columbus, Ohio-based lender, rose the most in almost 17 months after reporting second-quarter earnings that beat analysts’ estimates on gains in commercial and auto lending.

Huntington climbed 3.8 percent to $9.65 at 9:33 a.m. in New York, the most since February 2013. The gain brought the shares back to even for the year, compared with the 1.9 percent advance of the 24-company KBW Bank Index.

Net income rose 9 percent to $164.6 million, or 19 cents a share, from $151 million, or 17 cents, the bank said today in a statement. The average estimate of 23 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was 18 cents. Revenue increased 4.9 percent to $716.8 million from a year earlier, while net interest margin, the difference between what a bank pays for deposits and charges for loans, improved to 3.28 percent from 3.27 percent in the first quarter.

“Loan growth was robust, accelerating from previous quarters,” Ken Usdin, an analyst at Jefferies Group LLC who has a buy rating on the stock, said in a note to investors. “We expect shares to react positively to these results.”

Total lending climbed 9 percent to $45 billion in the quarter, fueled by a 7 percent increase in commercial and industrial loans and a 39 percent advance in auto lending, the bank said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Craig Giammona in New York at cgiammona@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Peter Eichenbaum at peichenbaum@bloomberg.net Steven Crabill, Dan Reichl

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