Thursday's Earnings Roundup: BAC, MS, DD, TRV, DHR, VZ, EMC, NOK

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Bank of America ( BAC) posted first-quarter earnings Thursday morning that beat analysts' estimates as did Morgan Stanley ( MS).

The two banks were among the following companies reporting earnings Thursday: DuPont ( DD), Travelers ( TRV), Danaher ( DHR), Verizon ( VZ), EMC ( EMC) and Nokia ( NOK).

Bank of America

The bank reported first-quarter earnings of 3 cents a share on $22.5 billion in revenue. On a valuation-adjusted basis, earnings came in at 28 cents a share, topping analysts' estimates of 12 cents a share on $22.51 billion in revenue.

"The narrowing of our credit spreads reflects the significant progress we've made to strengthen the balance sheet," Chief Financial Officer Bruce Thompson said in a statement. "During the quarter, we increased our Tier 1 common equity ratio by 92 basis points from the prior quarter, improved our liquidity to record levels and continued to reduce risk-weighted assets. While the improvement in our credit spreads results in a negative adjustment to earnings this quarter, it should not overshadow the positive momentum that we are seeing in our businesses."

Shares of Bank of America rose 2.8% in premarket trading Thursday to $9.17. TheStreet Ratings gives Bank of America a C- grade and hold rating.

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Morgan Stanley

The firm's first-quarter earnings of 71 cents a share on $8.9 billion in revenue beat analysts' estimates of 42 cents a share on revenue of $7.31 billion.

"This quarter is further evidence that Morgan Stanley has rebounded from the financial crisis of 2008 and is in a significantly stronger position," CEO James Gorman said in a statement. He added, "Of particular note was the strength in sales and trading, which showed broad-based gains across products and regions. In addition, our global alliance with MUFG continues to strengthen, with improving operating performance in our securities joint venture in Japan and continued loan growth in the U.S. On the near horizon, we are intensely focused on completing the transition of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney to the new, state-of-the-art technology platform this summer, as well as maintaining a conservative capital and liquidity profile as we navigate global markets."

Trading and sales net revenue for the quarter was $2.2 billion; the global wealth management division had $3.4 billion in net revenue.

Shares of Morgan Stanley rose 5.15% in premarket trading Thursday to $18.57. TheStreet Ratings gives Morgan Stanley a C- grade and hold rating.


DuPont

The chemical company reported first-quarter earnings of $1.49 billion, or $1.57 a share, up from year-earlier earnings of $1.43 billion, or $1.52. Analysts, on average, were expecting earnings of $1.55 a share.

"DuPont's market-driven science and commitment to innovation and productivity are winning in key markets, despite economic headwinds early in the first quarter," DuPont CEO Ellen Kullman said in a statement. "Around the world, we are bringing our science closer to local markets by collaborating with customers and partners in our new DuPont Innovation Centers. We are prioritizing our R&D portfolio to deliver food, energy and protection solutions for the world's growing population."

Consolidated sales increased 12% to $11.2 billion with the biggest increase by region coming from Latin America with sales of $1.2 billion, up 23%.

Shares of DuPont fell 2 cents, or 0.04%, in premarket trading Thursday to $53.25. TheStreet Ratings gives DuPont an A- grade with a buy rating and $60.53 price target.

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Travelers

The insurance company's first-quarter earnings were $806 million, or $2.02 a share, down from year-earlier earnings of $839 million, or $1.92 a share.

"Given that low investment yields and unusual weather patterns have continued, we remain committed to actively, but selectively, seeking price increases and improved terms and conditions in order to continue to improve returns," CEO Jay Fishman said in a statement.

Shares of Travelers rose 2.91% in premarket trading Thursday to $61.20. TheStreet Ratings gives Travelers a B grade with a buy rating and $68.96 price target.


Danaher

The industrial products manufacturer reported first-quarter earnings of $612.9 million, or 73 cents a share, up from year-earlier earnings of $429.4 million, or 61 cents.

"The quarter progressed largely as we expected and we were particularly pleased with our team's execution which led to excellent core operating margin expansion, cash flow and earnings performance," CEO Lawrence Culp said in a statement. "In addition, we were encouraged by the sequential business improvement within the quarter and anticipate core growth will accelerate in the second quarter. With improving core growth, the cost reductions undertaken in 2011 and an attractive acquisition environment, we believe we are well positioned for the balance of 2012 and beyond."

Danaher narrowed its guidance for full-year 2012 net earnings to between $3.25 and $3.35 a share. Previous guidance was for between $3.20 and $3.35.

Shares of Danaher fell 47 cents, or 0.86%, in premarket trading Thursday to $54.22. TheStreet Ratings gives Danaher an A+ grade with a buy rating and $62.94 price target.

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Verizon

The telecommunications company reported first-quarter earnings of 59 cents a share, up from year-earlier earnings of 51 cents a share. Analysts were expecting 58 cents a share.

"Verizon delivered double-digit earnings growth and strong cash flow this quarter," CEO Lowell McAdam said in a statement. "We built momentum coming out of 2011, and our results show that we continue to execute in the key growth areas of our business. Verizon Wireless produced both great growth and great margins, and we produced another strong quarter of FiOS growth. We are confident we will improve Wireline margins for the full year. Our repositioning of Verizon Enterprise Solutions has better aligned our strengths in high-growth markets, and we expect our enterprise business to contribute even more to overall Wireline revenue growth and profitability over time."

Shares of Verizon rose 1.06% in premarket trading Thursday to $38.06. TheStreet Ratings gives Verizon a B- grade with a buy rating and $43.37 price target.


EMC

The company reported first-quarter earnings of $587 million, or 27 cents a share. Analysts, on average, were anticipating earnings of 36 cents a share.

"EMC's solid first-quarter results are ongoing proof that we are executing on our strategy and on track to deliver our 'triple play' - simultaneously taking market share, reinvesting for growth and delivering improved earnings this year," Chief Financial Officer David Goulden said in a statement. "Based upon our strong start to the year and our opportunity, we now have greater confidence in our ability to meet and potentially exceed our 2012 financial goals for consolidated revenue, non-GAAP EPS and free cash flow. Additionally, with continued steady execution, we are well on our way to achieving the financial potential of 2014 consolidated revenue of over $28 billion, which represents compound annual revenue growth of at least 13% from 2010 and non-GAAP EPS growth even greater than this."

The company anticipates that consolidated GAAP net income for this year will be $2.8 billion, or about $1.25 a share.

Shares of EMC fell 2.64% in premarket trading Thursday to $28.37. TheStreet Ratings gives EMC an A grade with a buy rating and $33.73 price target.

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Nokia

The phone company reported a first-quarter loss of €1.57 billion euros, down from year-earlier profit of €231 million.

"We are navigating through a significant company transition in an industry environment that continues to evolve and shift quickly," CEO Stephen Elop said in a statement. "Over the last year we have made progress on our new strategy, but we have faced greater than expected competitive challenges."

Share of Nokia fell 3.02% in premarket trading Thursday to $3.85. TheStreet Ratings gives Nokia a C- grade and hold rating.

-- Written by Alexandra Zendrian

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