Countrywide Credit Industries Inc. on Tuesday reported net earnings of $103.4 million for the first quarter, a 14% increase over a year earlier.

The company said applications remained strong despite recent rate hikes because of increased market share and high purchase activity.

Business over the Internet increased 149% from a year earlier. The company funded $212 million in loans on-line during the quarter, and its Web site recorded 11 million hits.

The company's stock fell by more than $2 after the announcement. Analysts attributed the drop to concern over rising interest rates.

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