* Q1 EPS $5.36 vs Wall Street view $5.30
* Transactions processed rise 29 pct to 7.7 bln
* Shares down 2.6 pct
By David Henry
May 2 MasterCard Inc, the world's
second-largest credit and debit card network, reported a 21
percent rise in quarterly profit as consumers spent more with
their cards and revenue rose faster than expenses.
Executives cautioned, however, that such gains are less
likely over the rest of the year because of the strength of the
business in the latter parts of 2011, and given doubts about
consumer confidence in the United States and in Europe.
MasterCard shares fell 2.6 percent to $445.59 in morning
trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Stocks fell broadly
after disappointing news on manufacturing in Europe and
private-sector job growth in the United States.
CEO Ajay Banga said that while U.S. consumer confidence has
been roughly flat for two months, it is still higher than a year
ago. Consumer spending in the United States, MasterCard's home
market, was up in all 11 categories the company tracks in the
first quarter and was strongest at restaurants and at apparel,
hardware and electronics stores, Banga said in a conference
Cardholders made $629 billion of purchases worldwide during
the first quarter, up 17 percent from a year earlier, MasterCard
Card payments outside the United States grew 20.6 percent,
based on local currencies, compared with 14 percent growth in
the United States.
The number of transactions processed increased 29 percent to
7.7 billion, the fastest rate of growth since MasterCard went
public in 2006. The increase reflects, in part, the increasing
movement of consumers globally to making payments electronically
instead of with paper currency.
Net income was $682 million, or $5.36 a share, compared with
$562 million, or $4.29 a share, a year earlier, the Purchase,
New York-based company reported on Wednesday.
Analysts on average had expected $5.30 a share, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
MasterCard net revenue, adjusted for an acquisition, grew
faster than expenses, rising 16 percent while operating expenses
increased 9 percent.
Visa Inc, MasterCard's larger rival in card payment
processing networks, is scheduled to report its quarterly
results following the close of New York Stock Exchange trading.