bank vaultComerica Inc. (NYSE: CMA) reported fourth-quarter and full-year 2012 results before markets opened this morning. The financial services company reported diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.68 on net income of $130 million. In the same period a year ago, Comerica reported EPS of $0.61 on net income of $117 million. Fourth-quarter results compare also to the consensus estimates for EPS of $0.65.

For the full year, Comerica reported EPS of $2.67 on net income of $521 million. A year ago the company reported EPS of $2.09 on net income of $393 million. The consensus estimate called for EPS of $2.66.

The company's CEO said:

Loan and fee income growth combined with expense control contributed to our 11 percent increase in net income, when compared to the third quarter. In this slow growing national economy, we continue to benefit from our position in growth markets and industry expertise, which helped drive an increase in average total loans of $522 million, primarily reflecting an increase of $762 million, or 3 percent, in commercial loans.

Where the bank did not perform so well was in commercial real estate loans. Loans for commercial mortgages and real estate construction fell by $241 million, compared with the third quarter.

For the 2013 fiscal year, Comerica expects average loan growth to slow, due in part to "economic uncertainty impacting demand." The bank also expects lower net interest income partly as the result of continuing low interest rates.

Shares closed about 0.5% higher last night, at $31.87 in a 52-week range of $27.42 to $34.00. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $33.20 before today's results were announced.


Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Banking & Finance, Earnings Tagged: CMA

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