Bank of America Edges Out Earnings Expectations, Shares Jump

Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) released its fourth quarter earnings report before opening bell this morning, reporting earnings of 29 cents per share on $21.7 billion in revenue for the quarter. Analysts had been expecting the bank to report earnings of 27 cents per share on revenue of $21.28 billion.

Shares rose more than 2% in premarket trading after the results were announced.

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Breaking down Bank of America’s latest results

In the same quarter a year ago, Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) reported earnings of 3 cents per share. For the full year of 2013, the bank reported earnings of 90 cents per share, compared to 25 cents per share in 2012. In this morning’s earnings release, management emphasized the strength of the bank’s balance sheet.

“We enter this year with one of the strongest balance sheets in our company’s history,” said Chief Financial Officer Bruce Thompson in a statement. “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.”

During the fourth quarter, Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) reported negative DVA / FVO adjustments of 600 million as it tightened its credit spreads. The bank also had $2.3 billion in pretax litigation expenses and an effective tax rate of 10.6%.

Bank of America breaks down divisions

Consolidated deposit balances at the end of the quarter rose to $1.12 trillion—a new record. The bank also had $928 billion in loan balances at the end of the quarter and $123 billion in combined debit and consumer credit card spending—a 4% increase from the same quarter a year ago. At the end of the quarter, commercial loan balances were up $42 billion to $396 billion. The bank also had an increase in global wealth and investment management pretax margin, which increased from 21.1% to 26.6%.

Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) also had record global banking revenue of $4.3 billion, a 9% increase over the same quarter a year ago. At the end of the quarter, it saw continued improvement in credit quality as net charge-offs fell 49%. Bank of America’s Basel I Tier 1 Common Capital was $145 billion with a ratio of 11.19%. The bank’s Basel III Tier 1 Common Capital Ratio was 9.96%, an increase from 9.25%.