After a couple of slow quarters, the three months to December showed the Japanese stock market may be picking up.
Despite performing better than expected, Nomura's net income fell 25.9 per cent to $650 million after a drop in brokerage fees.
Daiwa profits fell by 31 per cent to $220 million from a year ago, although earning rose 57 per cent on the previous quarter.
Nomura president and chief executive Nobuyuki Koga said: "In the third quarter, our strategically-important investment trust business continued to perform strongly, and we began to see a recovery in the market-related business.
"We are confident that the key strategic investments we announced during the quarterâ¦will be effective in accelerating our growth."
As competition in brokerage increases in Japan - with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial moving into the sector among others - both Nomura and Daiwa have looked abroad. Nomura recently bought Fortress Investment Group.