Infrastructure investment drives Macquarie Bank profit

The Macquarie Bank machine surprised the market with a 17 per cent increase in first-half net profit to $284 million. The bank upgraded its profit outlook, and predicted a rise in revenue and earnings in the full year. Macquarie recorded the rise in profit despite being inelgible for any performance fees on its most significant managed funds. Six months ago, the bank said it would be difficult to repeat to 2004 full year profit. Macquarie increased its funds under management by 20 per cent to $74 billion. The banks said it had more than $50 billion worth of infrastructure deals in the pipeline, though the bank could expect to win a mandate for only some of them.