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American Express Fourth Quarter EPS Rises To $1.21 From $0.56 Last Year; Revenues And Loans Increase As Card Member Spending Ends Year On Strong Note; Credit Indicators Remain At Historical Lows; Operating Expenses Well Contained In The Quarter

Stocks in this article: AXP

Mr. Chenault said, “Serving Card Members and merchants through a diversified, spend-centric business has allowed us to generate consistent revenue increases at a time when top line growth is still under pressure in parts of the financial services industry.

“Controlling operating expenses, 4” he added, “remains a top priority, and the restructuring we began a year ago allowed us to more than meet the goal we set for 2013.

“We enter 2014 with good momentum and the flexibility to make investments aimed at building on the strength of our performance during the past several years.”

For the full year, the company reported net income of $5.4 billion, up 20 percent from $4.5 billion a year ago. Diluted earnings per share rose to $4.88, up 25 percent from $3.89 a year ago.

Revenues net of interest expense for the full year increased 4 percent (5 percent FX adjusted 3) to $33.0 billion from $31.6 billion a year ago. Consolidated expenses totaled $23.0 billion, down 1 percent from a year ago. Adjusted for foreign currency translations, expenses were unchanged from a year ago. 3

Segment Results

U.S. Card Services reported fourth-quarter net income of $864 million, up from $423 million a year ago.

Total revenues net of interest expense increased 8 percent to $4.4 billion from $4.1 billion a year ago. The rise reflected a 9 percent increase in Card Member spending and higher net interest income. Revenues in the year-ago period reflected the impact of Card Member reimbursements mentioned above.

Provisions for losses totaled $346 million, down 27 percent from $477 million a year ago. The decrease reflected the benefit of lower net write-offs and a reserve release in the current quarter.

Total expenses decreased 8 percent to $2.8 billion from $3.0 billion a year ago, which included the rewards charges and a portion of the restructuring charge mentioned above.

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