U.S. Bancorp (USB), the nation's biggest regional lender, said third-quarter profit climbed 16 percent to a record, beating analysts' estimates as mortgage-banking revenue more than doubled.

Net income rose to $1.47 billion, or 74 cents a share, from $1.27 billion, or 64 cents, a year earlier, the Minneapolis- based company said Wednesday in a statement. The average estimate of 31 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was per-share profit of 73 cents.

Chief Executive Officer Richard Davis, 54, has run U.S. Bancorp since 2006 and has never posted a loss. The lender is focusing on taking market share in mortgage banking, a business that has been a "real positive" for the company, Davis told investors at a conference last month. U.S. Bancorp may also seek growth through takeovers in payments and trust businesses, he said.

"Earnings included continued strong mortgage-banking activity, which contributed to our growth in fee income, residential real estate loans and loans held for sale," Davis said Wednesday in the statement.

U.S. Bancorp fell 2 cents to $33.61 on Tuesday in New York trading. The shares have gained 24 percent this year, compared with a 28 percent advance in the 24-company KBW Bank Index.
 

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