Ameriprise Financial Inc. on Tuesday reported that net earnings were down for the third quarter, even as earnings per share increased.
Net earnings were $503 million, or $3.43 per share, for the quarter ended Sept. 30 compared to $507 million, or $3.26 per share, in the same period a year ago.
The Minneapolis-based investment-management firm said its profits, after adjustments and an annual “unlocking” calculation, were $594 million, or $4.05 per share, compared to $525 million, or $3.38 per share, in the third quarter last year. The adjusted operating earnings, excluding “unlocking” rose 13 percent and the EPS figure rose 20 percent.
Adjusted operating earnings for the quarter were $548 million, or $3.74 per share, above the expectations of analysts tracked by Thomson Reuters, which was expecting adjusted earnings per share of $3.69 per share.
In the third quarter each year Ameriprise does an “unlocking” calculation on the value of Ameriprise annuities and insurance products. The annual review looks at the experience of those products in the market and compares them against assumptions and models made previously and then makes updates to those models based on the unlocking formulas.
The unlocking review resulted in a $58 million operating charge, primarily related to long-term care insurance, but according to the company’s earnings release, was within management’s expectations.
“In an environment of a strong U.S. economy and heightened equity market volatility globally, our comprehensive value proposition and strong financial foundation position Ameriprise well to serve more clients’ needs for advice and provide informed perspective,” said Ameriprise Chairman and Chief Executive Jim Cracchiolo, in a statement. “We’re delivering strong results while evolving our business mix, investing in the business and returning capital to shareholders at attractive levels.”
Revenue for the quarter was $3.3 billion, up from $3 billion a year ago. The company’s largest segment, Advice and Wealth Management, showed the strongest growth in the quarter with net revenue of $1.56 billion, up 11 percent from the third quarter last year. Market appreciation, client activity and adviser productivity were the key revenue drivers in the quarter.
Pretax adjusted operating earnings for the Advice and Wealth Management segment was $355 million, an approximately 19 percent increase over third quarter last year. The value of retail client assets grew 9 percent to $588 billion, and net flows into client wrap accounts were $5.7 billion.
The company’s Asset Management segment saw net revenue of $772 million, compared with $784 million in the third quarter last year, a 1.5 percent decrease. Pretax adjusted-operating earnings for the segment were $197 million, down 3 percent.
Shares of Ameriprise closed Tuesday at $132.31, down 86 cents or 0.7 percent. Results were released after the market closed but there was little change in after-hours trading activity. For the year Ameriprise shares are down 22 percent and during the last 52 weeks shares have traded in the range of $129.46 to $183.96 per share.