Morgan Stanley has reported profit of $1.4bn, or $0.80 per diluted share, from continuing operations for the second quarter ended June 30, 2010 compared with a loss of $138m, or $1.36 per diluted share, for the same period a year ago.

Net revenues for the second quarter of 2010 were $8bn compared with $5.2bn in the same quarter of 2009.

The company’s compensation expenses totaled of $3.9bn, which included a charge of $361m related to the UK government’s payroll tax on 2009 discretionary bonuses. The firm’s compensation to net revenue ratio for the current quarter was 49% compared with 73% a year ago.

James Gorman, president and CEO of Morgan Stanley, said: “While markets were challenging this quarter, Morgan Stanley benefited from a deliberate and disciplined focus on execution. We strengthened leading market positions in our client-focused investment banking business, improved client flows in sales and trading, and continued progress on the integration of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney as well as the repositioning of our Asset Management business.

“We still have a great deal of work to do across our global franchise and anticipate that the difficult market environment may continue in the months ahead. That said, we believe that regulatory reforms are a key step toward restoring trust in the industry and the markets.”