Bank of New York

(BK) - Get Report

,

Comerica

(CMA) - Get Report

and commercial lender

CIT Group

(CIT) - Get Report

all reported higher second-quarter profits on Wednesday that exceeded Wall Street expectations.

Bank of New York, one of the nation's largest securities processing and custodial institutions, reported a 7% rise in earnings. In the quarter, the bank earned $398 million, or 52 cents a share, compared with $371 million, or 48 cents a share, a year ago. Revenue rose 6% to $1.73 billion.

The Thomson Financial consensus estimate had the bank earning 50 cents a share. The bank also exceeded the consensus revenue estimate of $1.69 billion.

Bank of New York said fees from securities servicing rose 8% to $776 million.

Comerica, a major Midwestern regional lender, reported a 13% gain in second-quarter earnings. In the quarter, the bank earned $217 million, or $1.28 a share, up from $192 million, or $1.10 a share. The bank handily bested the analyst consensus estimate of $1.12 a share.

Net interest income, revenue from the bank's lending operation, rose 8% to $483 million. But noninterest income fell 4% to $219 million.

Bucking an industrywide trend, Comerica said its net interest margin rose to 4.09% from 3.77% in the year-ago quarter.

The net interest margin at most banks fell in the second quarter because of the so-called flattening of the yield curve, or the narrowing of the spread between short- and long-term rates. The net interest margin is a measure of the profitability of a bank's lending and deposit operation.

Commercial finance firm CIT reported a 25% profit gain, due largely to an improvement in credit quality on outstanding loans. In the quarter, the firm earned $221 million, or $1.03 a share, compared to $177 million, or 83 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Analysts had expected CIT to earn 99 cents a share.