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Bank of America: profit rises as consumer banking shines

( - Bank of America reported an increase in its quarterly profit on Tuesday as the US lender benefited from the strength of its consumer banking unit.

The bank's net income rose to 7.3 billion dollars in the first quarter, or 70 cents per share, compared to 6.9 billion dollars, or 62 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

"Economic growth and consumer activity in the U.S. continue to be solid," said CEO Brian Moynihan, adding that "businesses of every size are borrowing and driving the economy."

Indeed, net income for the consumer banking unit rose by 25% to 3.2 billion dollars in the first three months of 2019.

BofA also said that it has reduced total expenses by 4% from the first quarter of 2018.

However, Bank of America mentioned a "challenging capital markets environment."

Its global markets unit saw its net income fall by 26% to 1 billion dollars.

The bank's shares were up 0.2% in pre-market trading on Tuesday.

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