Beneficial Mutual Bancorp in Philadelphia reported a nearly 50% increase in third-quarter net income led by the sale of nonperforming assets.

Beneficial Mutual reported Friday that it earned $6.5 million, up approximately 46% from a year earlier. Earnings per share totaled nine cents, beating estimates from analysts polled by Bloomberg by four cents.

The company's assets have dipped nearly 5%, to $4.6 billion, since the beginning the year, primarily from a planned runoff of municipal and time-deposited cash. The company has plans to go public through a second-step conversion of stock, which has been on hold until August due to a Justice Department investigation of its real estate lending.

Net interest income was $29.4 million, a 4% decrease year over year. Losses on investments, as well as low interest rates on outstanding loans to customers, drove the decline. Still the company was able to increase its net interest margin by eight basis points, to 2.89%, year over year.

This past quarter the company earned $7.2 million in noninterest income, a 29% year-over-year increase from selling nonperforming loans. The company recorded a $1.7 million decrease in noninterest expenses from those sales.

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