Wells Fargo posts profit, revenue gains in first quarter

  • Article by: SUSAN FEYDER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 13, 2012 - 8:47 AM

Wells Fargo Co. Friday reported a 10.5 percent increase in profits that topped Wall Street's estimates.

The San Francisco-based bank, which has about 20,000 employees in Minnesota, said earnings for the period ended March 31 totaled $4.2 billion, or 75 cents a share. That compares with 67 cents a share last year and analysts' estimates of 73 cents a share.

Revenue totaled $21.6 billion, up from $20.3 billion a year earlier and $20.6 billion in the previous quarter. Officials said strong mortgage banking results fueled the revenue gains.

Wells Fargo's net interest margin, which measures the difference between what a bank makes on loans and what it must pay out in interest, came in at 3.91 percent, up from 3.89 percent in the previous quarter.

Credit quality improved, with net charge-offs for uncollectible loans falling to $2.4 billion, or 1.25 percent of average loans, compared with $2.6 billion, or 1.36 percent of average loans, in the fourth quarter of 2011. Wells Fargo said the first-quarter charge-off rate was the lowest since 2007.

Susan Feyder • 612-673-1723

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