Blackstone Group 2nd-quarter profit more than doubles, revenue improves

The Blackstone Group saw second-quarter profit more than double, buoyed by strong performance fee growth.

The New York private equity firm earned $517 million, or 65 cents per unit, for the quarter. A year earlier it earned $211.1 million, or 28 cents per unit.

Economic net income, which removes charges tied to employee stock grants from Blackstone's 2007 initial public offering of stock, rose to $1.33 billion, or $1.15 per unit, from $703.2 million, or 62 cents per unit, in the prior-year period.

Economic net income is an adjusted profit measure favored by the private equity industry.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet forecast 72 cents per unit.

Revenue increased 56 percent to $2.24 billion from $1.43 billion. Wall Street was looking for $1.59 billion.

Performance fees nearly doubled to $1.4 billion from $719.2 million.

Assets under management climbed 21 percent to $279 billion.

The Blackstone Group LP also declared a quarterly distribution of 55 cents per unit Thursday. The distribution will be paid on Aug. 4 to unit holders of record on July 28.

The stock gained 33 cents to $34.31 in afternoon trading.