Boosted by its investment banking and wealth management units, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reported stronger than expected first-quarter results. The New York-based company posted first-quarter earnings today of $3.33 billion, or 74 cents a share, a 55% increase from the year-ago period. JPMorgan Chase’s [JPM] overall revenue rose 5% to $28.17 billion.

Both earnings per share and revenue bested expectations. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected earnings of 64 cents per share on $26.46 billion in revenue.

The company received a strong boost from its wealth and investment business. Revenue from its private bank rose 20% to $698 million; revenue from its institutional wealth business increased 23% to $566 million; revenue from private wealth management rose 10% to $343 million.

Assets under supervision ($1.7 trillion) and  assets under management ($1.2 trillion) increased 17% and 9%, respectively. The company attributed these gains to “the effect of higher market levels and inflows in fixed income and equity products offset largely by outflows in liquidity products.” Custody, brokerage, administration and deposit balances increased 40% to $488 billion due to higher market levels on custody and brokerage balances, and custody inflows into the private bank.

The investment bank reported a quarter net revenue of $8.3 billion, down slightly from a year earlier. And revenue from JPMorgan Securities rose 15% to $109 million.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon said during a conference call Wednesday that the strong results were “partially offset by high losses in the consumer credit portfolios.” Managed credit-loss provisions were $7.01 billion, down from $10.06 billion a year earlier and $8.9 billion in the previous quarter.

Michael Cavanagh, the company’s chief financial officer, said during the conference call that it would likely raise its dividend during the second half this year. Dimon said he didn’t know if regulators would allow JPMorgan Chase to do so.

Dimon said he thinks that the economy is strengthening and moving away from the possibility of a "double dip," recession.

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