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Wells Fargo WFC earnings Q1 2024

Hightower’s Stephanie Link reacts to Wells Fargo's Q1 earnings

Wells Fargo on Friday reported first-quarter earnings and revenue that beat Wall Street expectations, despite a decline in net interest income.

Here’s how the company performed compared with what Wall Street was anticipating, based on a survey of analysts by LSEG, formerly known as Refinitiv:

  • Earnings per share: $1.26 cents adjusted vs. $1.11 cents expected
  • Revenue: $20.86 billion vs. $20.20 billion expected

Shares of Wells traded flat Friday following the earnings report.

Wells said its net interest income, a key measure of what a bank makes on lending, decreased 8% in the quarter, due to the impact of higher interest rates on funding costs and a shift by customers to higher-yielding deposit products.

Net interest income for 2024 is expected to post a decline in the 7% to 9% range, unchanged from its prior guidance.

A woman walks past Wells Fargo bank in New York City, U.S., March 17, 2020.

Jeenah Moon | Reuters

The San Francisco-based bank saw net income decline to $4.62 billion, or $1.20 per share, from $4.99 billion, or $1.23 per share, a year earlier. Excluding a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. charge of $284 million, or 6 cents per share, tied to the bank failures in 2023, Wells said it earned $1.26 per share, topping analyst estimates of $1.11 per share.

Revenue of $20.86 billion came in above the $20.20 billion estimate.

“Our solid first quarter results demonstrate the progress we continue to make to improve and diversify our financial performance,” Wells CEO Charlie Scharf said in a statement.

“The investments we are making across the franchise contributed to higher revenue versus the fourth quarter as an increase in noninterest income more than offset an expected decline in net interest income,” Scharf added.

For the latest period, the bank set aside $938 million as provision for credit losses. The bank said the provision included a decrease in the allowance for credit losses, driven by commercial real estate and auto loans.

Wells’ stock is up more than 15% year to date, beating the S&P 500’s 9% return.

The bank repurchased 112.5 million shares, or $6.1 billion, of common stock in first quarter.

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