Morningstar Inc. reported fourth-quarter and full-year earnings on Thursday, posting revenue of more than $151 million for the fourth quarter, representing a 23.2% increase over the fourth quarter of 2009. Consolidated operating income increased 33% to over $32 million, and net income was $27 million, or $0.54 per diluted share.
Revenue increased nearly 16% to $555 million for all of 2010, including nearly $48 million from acquisitions and $4.4 million from foreign currency translations. Consolidated operating income fell, however, dropping nearly 3% to $121 million. Net income was $86 million, or $1.70 per diluted share, up slightly from $82 million in 2009.
Morningstar noted that operating expense rose faster than revenue in 2010, which led to a 4.2 percentage point drop in operating margin.
In the investment information segment, revenue increased almost 29% in the fourth quarter to $120 million, including $12 million from acquisitions. Operating income increased slightly, rising from $31.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2009 to $31.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2010. Operating expense rose over 34% to nearly $23 million, primarily due to increased costs from acquisitions. Acquisitions did not have a significant impact on operating margin, which fell to 26% on higher compensation, bonus, commission, and benefits expenses.
Revenue for the information management segment grew 21% to nearly $31 million, including $1.4 million in acquisitions. Retirement advice, investment consulting and Morningstar managed portfolios were the primary growth drivers for this segment. Total assets under management increased nearly three-quarters for investment consulting to over $107 billion. For retirement advice, assets under management increased to nearly $20 billion, while managed portfolios were relatively stable, rising from $2.1 billion at the end of 2009 to $2.7 billion in 2010.
Operating income in the information management segment increased 15% to $15.7 million, while expenses increased to $15.1 million. As such, operating margin was 50.9%.
International operations garnered $44.5 million in revenue in the fourth quarter, up 24% from the same period a year ago. Revenue included $4 million from acquisitions.