'Looking considerably better than a year ago'.
Bloomberg News reports that Bank of America has said fourth-quarter profit more than quadrupled as the company sought to quell claims tied to defective mortgages. The results beat most Wall Street estimates, and the stock rose in early New York trading.
Net income of $3.44bn rose from $732m a year earlier.
CEO Brian Moynihan, 54, has spent his four years atop Bank of America resolving disputes tied to shoddy home loans and foreclosures, mostly from his predecessor’s 2008 takeover of Countrywide Financial. He signaled in November that attention is shifting from the mortgage cleanup to improving performance at operating units, calling his firm a 'huge battleship' that is gaining speed.
'They’re looking considerably better than a year ago', said Marty Mosby, a bank analyst at Guggenheim Securities with a neutral rating on the stock. 'The Street now believes their story, which is that remaining mortgage costs will be manageable'.
'We are pleased to see the core businesses continue to perform well, serving our customers and clients', Moynihan said. 'While work remains on past issues, our two hundred forty thousand teammates continue to do a great job winning in the marketplace'.
'We enter this year with one of the strongest balance sheets in our company’s history', said Chief Financial Officer Bruce Thompson. 'Capital and liquidity are at record levels, credit losses are at historic lows, our cost savings initiatives are on track and yielding significant savings, and our businesses are seeing good momentum'.
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image: © Dominic Alves