- PNC reports first-quarter earnings per share of $1.44.
- Analysts were expecting EPS of $1.43.
- First-quarter mortgage revenue grew 18% year-over-year, to $230 million.
The company's first-quarter return on average assets was 1.16%, compared to 0.72% in the fourth quarter and 1.29% in the first quarter of 2011. The return on average common equity was 9.41% in the first quarter, compared to 5.70% the previous quarter and 11.12% a year earlier. PNC's net interest margin was 3.90% in the first quarter, increasing from 3.86% in the fourth quarter, but declining from 3.94% in the first quarter of 2011, in line with industry trends in the prolonged low-rate environment. CEO James Rohr said that "with the completion of our acquisition of RBC Bank (USA), we plan to leverage our brand and innovative product set to grow market share in the southeast." PNC's shares closed at $63.41 Tuesday, returning 11% year-to-date, following a 3% decline during 2011.The shares trade for nine times the consensus 2013 EPS estimate of $6.83. The consensus 2012 EPS estimate is $6.19. PNC said it "plans to purchase up to $250 million of common stock under its existing 25 million share repurchase program in open market or privately negotiated transactions during the remainder of 2012." Based on a quarterly payout of 40 cents, the shares have a dividend yield of 2.52%. Jefferies analyst Ken Usdin rates PNC a "Buy," with a $70 price target, and said that although PNC reported first-quarter earnings of $1.44 a share, "core EPS is closer to $1.55-$1.60 depending on what is excluded" among one-time items, and that "underneath the noise, trends were good." The "one-timers" Usdin would exclude from core earnings include the "145mm of integration expenses ($0.18 drag), $72mm of legal expense ($0.09 drag), $38mm of foreclosure expense ($0.05 drag), $19mm of securities gains ($0.02 benefit), $71mm of hedging gains ($0.09 benefit), and a below-average tax rate ($0.09 benefit)." Interested in more on PNC Financial Service Group? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock. -- Written by Philip van Doorn in Jupiter, Fla. To contact the writer, click here: Philip van Doorn. To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/PhilipvanDoorn.