NEW YORK CITY-While the securities industry had a strong firsthalf of 2013—reporting profits of $10.1 billion—uncertainty inWashington and some changing conditions threaten earnings in thesecond half of the year, according to a new report, releasedTuesday, by New York State Comptroller ThomasDiNapoli. Rising interest rates, litigation costs and theuncertainty created in Washington D.C. could limit overall earningsfor the year to $15 billion.

“The political gridlock in Washington may take a bite out of thesecurities industry's profits for the fourth quarter,” DiNapolisays. “Washington's inability to resolve budget and fiscal issuesis bad for business. Wall Street has undergone substantial changessince the financial crisis yet it remains profitable, contributingto the improved finances of New York City and New York state.Failure to resolve the federal budget and debt ceiling impassecould disrupt the economy and hurt New York City and New Yorkstate."

Profits for the first half of 2013 were close to the pace of2012 but appear to be slowing. Over the longer term, it remains tobe seen how the securities industry will perform as the FederalReserve addresses interest rates and additional regulatory changesare implemented, the report states.

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Rayna Katz

Rayna Katz is a seasoned business journalist whose extensive experience includes coverage of the lodging sector, travel and the culinary space. She was most recently content director for a business-to-business publisher, overseeing four publications. While at Meeting News, a travel trade publication, she received a Best Reporting award for a story on meeting cancellations in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.