(Corrects EPS in bullets to $0.61 and $0.57 from $61 and $57)
* First-qtr profit $958 bln vs loss $119 mln a year earlier
* Adj EPS $0.61 vs Street view $0.57
* Wealth management revenue rises 5.4 percent
* Shares down 1 pct before the bell
April 18 Morgan Stanley reported a
stronger-than-expected first-quarter profit of $958 million,
compared with a year-earlier loss of $119 million, as its wealth
management business grew.
The sixth-largest U.S. bank by assets said on Thursday it
earned 49 cents per share on a consolidated basis in the first
three months of the year, compared with a loss of 6 cents per
share a year earlier.
Excluding a charge related to debt value adjustment (DVA),
or changes in the value of the company's debt, Morgan Stanley
earned $1.2 billion, or 61 cents per share.
On the same basis, analysts had expected earnings of 57
cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Shares of the bank, which has reported a profit excluding
items in every quarter since the first quarter of 2012, were
down 1 percent at $21.25 before the bell.
Excluding items, total revenue fell 4.8 percent to $8.48
billion, beating the average analyst forecast of $8.35 billion.
Revenue in the wealth management group, which had been
expected to drive earnings, rose 5.4 percent to $3.47 billion,
making up about 41 percent of total revenue.
The unit's profit margin was unchanged from the fourth
quarter at 17 percent, compared with 11 percent a year earlier.
Chief Executive James Gorman has staked the future of the
company on the wealth management business, arguing that it
offers more stable returns that will help offset volatility in
the bank's trading and investment banking businesses.
He had promised to deliver a "midteens" pre-tax margin in
the business by June -- after initially aiming for 20 percent --
but executives cautioned in January that the margin might drop
from a particularly strong fourth quarter.
(Reporting By Lauren Tara LaCapra in New York and Tanya Agrawal
in Bangalore; Editing by Supriya Kurane)