CME Group Net Income Declines 12 Percent as Lower Fees Cut Sales

CME Group Inc. (CME), the world’s largest futures market, said first-quarter profit fell 12 percent as lower non-operating revenue and fees per contract cut sales.

Net income dropped to $235.8 million, or 71 cents a share, from $266.6 million, or 80 cents a share, a year earlier, Chicago-based CME said today in a statement distributed by PR Newswire. Excluding a $12 million expense from foreign exchange losses, the company said it earned 73 cents a share, matching the average estimate of 19 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

CME Group received on average 78.5 cents per contract, below the forecast of 79.7 cents per contract expected by Rich Repetto, an analyst with Sandler O’Neill & Partners LP in New York. The year-ago figure was 81.1 cents per contract, according to the company. There were also two fewer trading days in the first quarter compared to the year-earlier period, Repetto said, which can cut revenue by 3 percent.

“They’ve seen a trend in lower screen counts and lower demand” for non-transaction services like the revenue it generates by selling data and information services, Repetto said yesterday before the results were released.

Revenue fell 7.2 percent to $718.6 million last quarter, from $774.6 million a year ago, the company said.

Revenue from selling market data and information services fell 29 percent to $80.9 million in the quarter from $114.2 million a year ago, CME Group said.

About 12.5 million contracts changed hands per day during the period on CME Group’s markets, which offer futures based on interest rates, equity indexes, commodities and energy products. That was up 1 percent from the year earlier average of 12.3 million per day, the company said last month.

CME Group shares have risen 18.7 percent this year through yesterday. They fell 1.2 percent to $60.13 yesterday in New York.

(CME Group will hold a conference call for analysts and investors at 8:30 a.m. New York time. To listen, access the company’s Web site at http://www.cmegroup.com)

To contact the reporter on this story: Matthew Leising in New York at mleising@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alan Goldstein at agoldstein5@bloomberg.net

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