UBS profits rise on higher trading, commission earnings

Markets Associated Press

Swiss bank UBS has reported a near doubling in its first quarter net profit to 1.3 billion francs ($1.3 billion), as its wealth management and investment banking operations grew.

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Profit was up from 707 million francs in the same period last year, and was welcomed by the bank's management as it tries to revitalize a firm that was hit hard by the financial crisis and various scandals.

Costs were steady though most measures of revenue increased. The bank also noted it has yet to reap the full benefits of a recent improvement in investor sentiment.

CEO Sergio Ermotti said Friday that "our very strong results in the first quarter highlight the power and potential of our franchise."

Shares in UBS AG in Zurich were up 3.3 percent to 17.20 francs.