Unfavorable equity markets and lower transaction volumes led Northern Trust Corp. to report a 2% drop in fourth-quarter profit.

The Chicago asset manager reported net income of $239.3 million, or 99 cents a share in the fourth quarter, down from $244 million, or 98 cents a share a year earlier. Revenue rose 2% to $1.2 billion. Still, the results beat analysts' consensus estimates of 91 cents a share.

The $116.7 billion-asset custody bank posted a 9% jump in net interest income to $296 million due to higher levels of earning assets and an increase in the company's net interest margin.

Noninterest income of $867.3 million rose less than 1% from a year earlier. Trust, investment and servicing fees rose 3% to $747.1 million, but overall noninterest income took a hit from movements in foreign exchange rates and equity markets.

Foreign exchange trading income fell 13% in the fourth quarter to $52.5 million due to lower client volumes.

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