SAN FRANCISCO (CBS/AP) — Discount broker Charles Schwab Corp. reported its first-quarter profit surged as the economy and stock markets improved.

The San Francisco company said its net income rose to $243 million, or 20 cents a share, in the three months ended March 31, from $6 million, or less than a penny a share, in the year-ago period.

The 2010 quarter included a $126 million reserve for class action lawsuits.  Revenue climbed 23 percent to $1.21 billion from $978 million.

On average, analysts polled by FactSet expected earnings of 19 cents per share on $1.18 billion in revenue.

Company shares rose 18 cents, or 1 percent, to $18.40 in morning trading.

(Copyright 2011 by CBSSan Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)

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