Higher noninterest income was instrumental in a 3.9% quarter-to-quarter profit increase at Capitol Federal Financial in Topeka, Kan., in the three months that ended March 31.

Earnings in the period, the second quarter of the company's 2016 fiscal year, were $21.5 million, or 16 cents a share, Capitol Federal said Thursday.

The $9.3 billion-asset company said that fee income rose 19% compared with the three months that ended Dec. 31 and that insurance commissions and income from bank-owned life insurance were especially strong.

Capitol Federal said a 1.2% increase in net interest income, to $48.5 million, "was due primarily to a decrease in interest expense" on Federal Home Loan Bank of Topeka advances.

The net interest margin rose by 3 basis points to 1.78%, thanks mainly to lower interest expenses on Federal Home Loan bank advances. Deposits rose 10.2% to $18.2 million.

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