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Bank of America posts third-quarter profit

Bank of America Corp. posted a $5.9 billion profit applicable to common shareholders in the third quarter, beating analysts' expectations, though the results were largely driven by one-time gains, from accounting changes to asset sales.

The Charlotte-based bank made about 56 cents per common share, compared to a loss of $7.6 billion, or 77 cents per share, a year ago. That marks a turnaround from last quarter, too, when the bank recorded its worst loss ever, $9.1 billion, including preferred dividend payments.

The third-quarter results reflect the bank's ongoing efforts to streamline the company, including a $3.6 billion pre-tax gain on the sale of shares of China Construction Bank. Accounting changes also helped, such as a $4.5 billion gain on fair value adjustments of structured liabilities.

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