Bank of Montreal hikes dividend as earnings beat market expectations

TORONTO — Bank of Montreal raised its quarterly dividend as it reported a second-quarter profit of $1.25 billion.The bank says it will now pay a quarterly dividend of 96 cents per share, up three cents from 93 cents in its previous quarter.BMO reported its second-quarter profit amounted to $1.86 per share compared with a profit of $1.25 billion or $1.84 per share a year ago when the bank had more shares outstanding.The latest quarter included a $192-million after-tax restructuring charge primarily related to severance costs.On an adjusted basis, BMO says it earned $2.20 per share for the quarter, up from $1.92 per share a year ago.Analysts on average had expected the bank to earned $2.12 per share, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.