December 6, 2007 / 2:12 PM / in 10 years

Canadian Western profit up 39 pct, dividend raised

TORONTO, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Canadian Western Bank CWB.TO said its profit jumped 39 percent in the fourth quarter, driven by revenue growth and a lower tax rate.

The regional bank also raised its quarterly dividend by 11 percent, to 10 Canadian cents per share from 9 Canadian cents previously.

Canadian Western, based in Edmonton, Alberta, said it earned C$29.6 million in the three months ended Oct. 31, or 46 Canadian cents a share.

That was up from C$21.2 million, or 33 Canadian cents a share, a year earlier.

Total revenues jumped 25 percent in the quarter, it said.

“We continue to benefit from Western Canada’s economies and expect to achieve sustained, high-quality organic growth,” Larry Pollock, the bank’s president and chief executive, said in a statement.

Alberta and British Columbia were the primary areas of loan growth in the latest quarter, and the bank cited “strong performance” in the real estate, energy and personal lending sectors.

Canadian Western is Canada’s seventh-largest bank by market capitalization. ($1=$1.02 Canadian) (Reporting by Lynne Olver; Editing by Peter Galloway)

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