The subprime lender Delta Financial Corp. said Tuesday that it earned 37 cents per share for the first quarter, beating analysts' estimates by 5 cents.

Net income was $5.7 million, versus $8.3 million a year earlier.

Delta is one of the few remaining publicly traded subprime lenders following the near-collapse of the asset-backed securities market last fall.

Retail originations increased 50% from a year earlier, to $404 million.

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