Two of the country's biggest financial heavyweights, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) and Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE:GS), reported their fourth quarter earnings on Wednesday. Both banks sailed past analyst estimates. JPMorgan Chase, the country's largest bank by assets, reported $5.7 billion or $1.39 per share in the fourth quarter earnings, up 55 percent from a year ago at $3.7 billion or 90 cents. Analysts surveyed by FactSet were expecting $1.19 in earnings. Morgan Stanley, which holds an Overweight rating on JPMorgan stock, was expecting $1.07 in EPS.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM)'s revenues also beat analyst estimates by growing 10 percent to $24.4 billion, after taking out the accounting charges. Last week the bank announced it will take $700 million in accounting charges related to the recent mortgage foreclosure and servicing settlement with regulators. The settlement requires JPMorgan, and nine other banks, to contribute $753 million into a fund for borrowers, and pledge another $1.2 billion for foreclosure prevention actions.
The New York-based banking giant's asset management business grew 21 percent on Y-o-Y basis from $2.28 billion to $2.75 billion. Corporate and investment banking revenues were up 19 percent, from $6.88 billion in Q4 of 2011 to $8.2 billion. Revenues from the consumer and community banking jumped 10 percent annually to $12.37 billion from last year's $11.2 billion. The only division to perform negatively was corporate/private equity business, which registered a revenue of just $140 million, down 120 percent from last year's $698 million.
The bank also said that it will cut its chief executive, Jamie Dino's pay to $11.5 million in 2012, due to the London Whale trading loss. In 2011, he was among the highest paid CEOs, with $23 million in annual pay.
Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE:GS) reported $5.60 or $2.83 billion in earnings on a revenue of $9.26 billion for the fourth quarter. Last year, the bank earned $1.84 per share on a revenue of $6.04 billion. The fourth quarter revenues jumped 53 percent and earnings rose 190 percent on a yearly basis. Analysts surveyed by FactSet were expecting $3.71 a share. For the full-year, net earnings were up 68 percent to $7.48 billion and revenues surged 119 percent to $34.2 billion.
Revenues from investment banking rose 64 percent from $857 million to $1.4 billion. Investment & lending business grew 126 percent Y-o-Y from $872 million to $1.97 billion. Institutional client services unit posted a revenue increase of 42 percent from $3.05 billion to $4.32 billion. The investment management unit grew 20 percent to $1.51 billion from last year's $1.26 billion.
Earnings and revenues of the both banking behemoths were slightly better than Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC), which reported its fourth quarter earnings on Friday. The country's largest mortgage lender reported 7 percent increase in its revenues to $21.9 billion. Earnings stood at $4.9 billion before dividend on preferred stock, or 91 cents a share, compared to 73 cents or $3.9 billion in the same period a year ago.