U.S. Bancorp Profit Little Changed on Lower Bad Loan Provisions

U.S. Bancorp, the nation’s biggest regional lender, said third-quarter net income was little changed as revenue fell and the bank set aside less for bad loans.

Profit was $1.47 billion, or 76 cents a share, compared to $1.47 billion, or 74 cents, a year earlier, the Minneapolis-based bank said today in a statement. The average estimate of 34 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was for earnings of 76 cents.

Chief Executive Officer Richard Davis told investors at a conference last month that the company was having a “very good quarter” amid loan growth from the previous three-month period. The company is also focusing on bolstering fees from businesses including wealth management and trust.

The results “reflected our continuing ability to manage through the current uncertain and slow-growing economy,” Davis, 55, said in today’s statement.

A jump in the 10-year Treasury yield last quarter prompted a decline in mortgage revenues at the biggest U.S. banks as fewer borrowers refinanced loans. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), the largest U.S. lender, said last week that mortgage fees and related revenue plunged 65 percent to $839 million in the third quarter. Mortgage banking revenue at Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC) declined 43 percent to $1.61 billion, the San Francisco-based lender said.

U.S. Bancorp Chief Financial Officer Andrew Cecere said last month mortgage applications would fall 40 percent in the third quarter, mortgage production would decline 20 percent and mortgage revenue would drop 20 percent.

The size of U.S. Bancorp is “perfect,” Davis said at the Sept. 12 investor conference. The lender isn’t looking to acquire another large bank and would rather “double down” on existing businesses, he said.

U.S. Bancorp gained 15 percent this year through yesterday, trailing the 24 percent advance of the 24-company KBW Bank Index.

To contact the reporter on this story: Laura Marcinek in New York at lmarcinek3@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christine Harper at charper@bloomberg.net; David Scheer at dscheer@bloomberg.net

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