First Niagara Financial Group (FNFG) in Buffalo, N.Y., met quarterly earnings estimates as its lending income ticked up and margins widened.

The $37 billion-asset company on Friday reported a profit of $63.6 million in the second quarter, after losing $18.5 million in the second quarter of 2012, when it recorded $135.2 million in expenses related to its purchase of more than 100 branches from HSBC. Earnings per share of 18 cents met the target of analysts polled by Bloomberg.

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