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NationsBank operating earnings up 23 percent

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NationsBank reported a 23 percent increase in operating earnings in the second quarter of 1998. Operating earnings rose 23 percent in the second quarter to $1.13 billion, or $1.18 per common share.

Earnings totaled $919 million, or 97 cents per share, a year earlier. This significant earnings improvement was primarily because of strong, broad-based increases in revenue, according to a release from NationsBank. The increases in revenue were mostly from loan growth, investment banking and brokerage activities.

"NationsBank's core operating performance trends continue to be quite positive. We are particularly pleased with the growth in our fee-based business, such as investment banking and brokerage, which is lessening our dependence on spread-based income," said Hugh L. McColl Jr., chief executive officer, in the release.

McColl also noted that the assimilation of the Florida-based Barnett Bank is on the right track. "We couldn't feel better about both our transition efforts and our financial performance in Florida," McColl said in the release.

The company also reported a $430 million pre-tax gain on the sale of 67 banking offices in Florida arising from the merger with Barnett Banks, the release stated. Including that gain, net income for the quarter was $1.41 billion, or $1.47 per share.

Operating revenues represented a return on average assets of 1.45 percent and a return on equity of 18.3 percent, exceeding year-ago figures of 1.3 percent and 15.7 percent, respectively, the release said.

Cash operating earnings, which exclude the amortization of intangibles, increased 21 percent from a year earlier to $1.27 billion, or $1.32 per share. Return on average tangible common shareholders' equity rose to 35 percent on an operating basis, up from 30 percent a year earlier, the release said.

For the first six months of 1998, operating earnings totaled $2.27 billion, or $2.38 per share, up 28 percent from $1.77 billion, or $1.87 per share, a year earlier. Net income for the first six months was $1.90 billion, or $1.99 per share.[[In-content Ad]]


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