National Bank reports Q4 profit down from year ago, raises quarterly dividend
National Bank of Canada raised its dividend as it reported its fourth-quarter profit fell four per cent compared with a year ago.
The Montreal-based bank said Wednesday it will up its quarterly payment to shareholders by five cents to 97 cents per share.
The increased payment came as National Bank said it earned $738 million or $2.08 per diluted share for the quarter ended Oct. 31, down from $769 million or $2.17 per diluted share in the same quarter last year. Revenue totalled $2.33 billion, up from $2.21 billion a year earlier.
Provisions for credit losses totalled $87 million in the fourth quarter compared with a recovery of $41 million a year ago.
National Bank said it earned $2.08 per diluted share on an adjusted basis in its latest quarter, down from an adjusted profit of $2.19 per diluted share in the same quarter last year.
Analysts on average had expected a profit of $2.24 per share, according to estimates compiled by financial markets data firm Refinitiv.
The results came as National Bank's personal and commercial banking business earned $351 million in its fourth quarter, up from $311 million in the same quarter last year.
National Bank said its wealth management operations earned $198 million in its latest quarter, up from $160 million a year earlier. Its financial markets business earned $205 million, down from $238 million a year ago.
The bank's U.S. specialty finance and international operations earned $132 million, up from $129 million in the same quarter last year, while under the other heading the bank reported a loss of $148 million compared with a loss of $69 million a year earlier.
For its full year ended Oct. 31, National Bank said its overall profit amounted to $3.38 billion or $9.61 per diluted share on $9.65 billion in revenue compared with a profit of $3.14 billion or $8.85 per diluted share on $8.93 billion in revenue during the same period a year earlier.
"We generated superior organic growth across all our business segments and the operating leverage was positive for the year," National Bank chief executive Laurent Ferreira said in a statement.
"We maintain prudent allowances for credit losses and robust capital ratios. We continue to prioritize deploying capital to support organic growth, investing in efficiency improvements and returning capital to shareholders."
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