Full-year 2012 net income on a U.S. GAAP basis was $84 million, or $0.65 per share (diluted). Fourth-quarter 2012 net loss on a U.S. GAAP basis was $5 million, or $(0.05) per share. A reconciliation of our U.S. GAAP results to the adjusted results is presented on page 20 of this press release.
“Lazard’s 2012 results underscore the strength and resilience of our business model,” said Kenneth M. Jacobs, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lazard. “Operating revenue is near record levels, reflecting the increasing diversification of our global franchise and our ability to anticipate the evolving needs of our clients.”
“As we reinforce the breadth and depth of our client services around the world, we are building shareholder value by enhancing our profitability and increasing our operating leverage. Lazard is well positioned for growth as the macro environment improves,” said Mr. Jacobs.
“The implementation of cost saving initiatives we announced in October is on track,” said Matthieu Bucaille, Chief Financial Officer of Lazard. “We are making progress toward our financial goals set in April 2012, which include an operating margin of 25% in 2014, based on 2012 activity levels.”
“In 2012, we returned $540 million in capital to shareholders, about 16% of Lazard’s year-end market capitalization,” said Mr. Bucaille. “This was a strong year for returning capital to shareholders as we achieved our goal of returning $200 million in surplus cash while paying a special dividend and accelerating the year’s final quarterly dividend. Going forward, we remain committed to offsetting potential share dilution from equity-related compensation, and it is our plan to continue to deploy future excess cash toward dividends, share repurchases and debt repurchases.”
In the text portion of this press release, we present our Financial Advisory results as Strategic Advisory and Restructuring. Strategic Advisory includes 1) M&A and Other Advisory (Other includes Capital Structure Advisory and Sovereign Advisory) and 2) Capital Raising (includes Capital Markets Advisory and Private Fund Advisory).
Financial Advisory operating revenue was $1,049 million in the full year of 2012, 6% higher than 2011, reflecting an increase in Strategic Advisory operating revenue, offset by a decrease in Restructuring operating revenue.