National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) has closed out the Big Six earnings season with steady overall growth and a richer dividend.

The Montreal-based lender's net income rose two per cent year-over-year in the fiscal second quarter to $558 million, or $1.51 per share. Analysts, on average, anticipated $1.52 in profit per share.

National Bank's core personal and commercial banking division led the way, as profit rose nine per cent to $234 million in that division.

The bank's financial markets division was a weak spot in the quarter, as profit sank 16 per cent to $160 million in the three-month period that ended April 30.

Nevertheless, National Bank announced Thursday it will raise its quarterly dividend three cents to $0.68 per share. The bank also said it will repurchase up to 6 million of its shares. 

"On the strength of favourable economic fundamentals, our performance was driven by positive momentum in our businesses, disciplined cost management, strong credit quality and solid capital ratios," National Bank CEO Louis Vachon said in a release.