Morgan Stanley MS posted stronger-than-expected fourth quarter earnings Thursday thanks in part to solid gains from its wealth management business.
Morgan Stanley said earnings for the three months ending in December came in at $1.30 per share, up from 80 cents over the same period last year and well ahead of the Street consensus forecast of $1.00. Group revenues, the bank said, rose 21.5% to $10.39 billion, again topping analysts’ estimates of a $9.737 billion tally.
Equity trading revenues were flat to last year at $1.9 billion, but fixed income revenues rose to $1.3 billion. Wealth management revenues rose 11% to $4.6 billion while investment management notched $1.4 billion, both figures coming in firmly ahead of analysts’ forecasts.
We delivered strong quarterly earnings across all of our businesses. Firmwide revenues were over $10 billion for the fourth consecutive quarter, resulting in record full year revenues and net income,” said CEO James Gorman. “This consistent performance met all of our stated performance targets.”
Morgan Stanley shares were marked 2.21% hihger in pre-market trading immediately following the earnings release to indicate an opening bell price of $54.11 each, a move that would extend the stock’s six-month gain to around 21.7%.
Overall quarterly sales and trading revenue surged 28.4% to $3.194 billion, Morgan Stanley said, with $2.31 billion of that total coming from the bank’s trading division.
Non-compensation expenses were essentially flat to last year at $2.9 billion, while compensation fees were sharply higher, rising 38% to $5.23 billion.