The Atlanta-based regional bank posted net income attributable to common shareholders of $365 million, or 68 cents per share for the three months ended June 30. That was up from $270 million, or 50 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2012.
Total revenue increased 7 percent to $2.25 billion from $2.1 billion.
The results beat Wall Street predictions. Analysts, on average, expected a profit of 66 cents per share on $2.16 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.
Chairman and CEO William Rogers Jr. said the profit growth stemmed from better credit quality and a 10 percent drop in non-interest expense compared with a year ago, adding that economic conditions are improving in the bank's markets.
Nonperforming loans — or loans that are past due and considered in danger of default — fell 22 percent during the quarter and accounted for 0.94 percent of total loans as of June 30, compared with 1.97 percent for the second quarter of last year. Net charge-offs, or loans written off as uncollectible, fell to $179 million for the period, down from $350 million a year ago, mainly because of fewer mortgage defaults.
Meanwhile, net interest income, or earnings from deposits and loans, fell 5 percent to $1.24 billion. Noninterest income, which includes fees for services and other sources of revenue, fell 9 percent to $858 million.
SunTrust shares rose 30 cents to $34.61 in midday trading.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.