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Morgan Stanley earns $867m in fourth quarter

NEW YORK — Profits roared back at the investment bank Morgan Stanley in the fourth quarter, reversing a loss in the same period a year ago, when its results were weighed down by a costly legal settlement.

Earnings increased sharply across the bank’s business lines, and its stock jumped. Morgan Stanley’s investment bank underwrote more stock and bond offerings and brought in more fees from advising companies on mergers and other deals.

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Financial advisers in the wealth management unit, who work with individual investors, generated more revenue per worker.

For the quarter, Morgan Stanley earned $867 million after stripping out an accounting charge related to changes in the value of the bank’s own debt. That compares with a loss of $374 million in the period a year ago. The loss last year was related to a settlement with the financial insurance company MBIA.

Morgan Stanley’s stock climbed $1.63 to $22.38, a gain of almost 8 percent.

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