Raymond James profit holds steady as dealmaking lull offsets interest income boost

(Reuters) - Raymond James on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter profit that was broadly unchanged as gains from higher interest rates were offset by a prolonged slump in dealmaking activity.

The higher-for-longer interest rate environment has benefited U.S. lenders, enabling them to earn more on the loans they provide to customers.

Net interest income and Raymond James Bank Deposit Program fees from third-party banks for the quarter rose 17%, to $711 million, compared to the same quarter last year.

Meanwhile, M&A activity, which had improved considerably through the year, nonetheless remains in check as fears of economic weakness linger.

Recent results at major U.S. investment banking heavyweights like Morgan Stanley reported a slump in their investment banking segments, highlighting the ongoing struggle for deals businesses.

Raymond James said investment banking revenue in the fourth quarter ended Sept. 30 fell 6% year-on-year, to $194 million.

Adjusted net income available to common shareholders came in at $457 million in the three months ended Sept 30., compared to $459 million a year earlier.

(Reporting by Jaiveer Singh Shekhawat and Pratik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Pooja Desai)