August 28, 2012 / 12:11 PM / in 5 years

UPDATE 1-Scotiabank profit up on office sale; dividend raised

* Quarterly profit C$1.22 a share excluding items; Wall St view C$1.19

* Office sale gain of C$614 mln

* Raises dividend by C$0.02/share to C$0.72

Aug 28 (Reuters) - Bank of Nova Scotia’s quarterly profit rose 57 percent on the back of a gain from the sale of the corporate headquarters in Toronto, and Canada’s No. 3 lender raised its quarterly dividend, it said on Tuesday.

Toronto-based Scotiabank said it had earned C$2.1 billion, or C$1.69 a share, in the third quarter ended on July 31, compared with C$1.3 billion, or C$1.10 a share, a year earlier.

Stripping out a C$614 gain from the office sale and other items, the profit was C$1.22 a share, just ahead of the analysts’ average estimate of C$1.19, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Scotiabank agreed to sell the 68-story Scotia Plaza office complex for $C1.27 billion to a pair of real estate investment trusts earlier this year.

The bank said it was trying to take advantage of Toronto’s red-hot commercial office market, but analysts said the positive offshoot of the deal was that it strengthened Scotiabank’s capital position just head of the implementation of stricter Basel III capital rules in 2013.

The bank raised its quarterly dividend by 2 Canadian cents to 57 Canadian cents a share.

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