Morgan Stanley said its fourth-quarter net income jumped to $1.04 billion, or $0.47 per share, from $84 million, or $0.02 a share, a year earlier, a gain of more than 1,100%. However, adjusted profits were $0.39 a share, missing estimates, according to Bloomberg.
Income from continuing operations was $903 million, or $0.40 per share, compared with income of $336 million, or $0.15 per share, a year ago. Revenue was flat at $7.8 billion in both Q4’14 and Q4’13; adjusted sales, though, in the most-recent period were $7.5 billion, down from $8.2 billion a year earlier.
Problem areas for the firm included Institutional Securities, which reported a pretax loss from continuing operations of $863 million vs. a pretax loss of $1.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013; the unit’s fixed-income and commodities trading revenue, for instance, dropped 14% year over year to $599 million, excluding the onetime items. Investment Management had a pretax loss from continuing operations of $6 million vs. a pretax profit of $331 million in Q4’13.
On the plus side, though, Wealth Management net revenues were $3.8 billion, an 8% jump from the prior quarter and a 2% increase from last year. Net income for the group was $736 million, which was down 8% sequentially but up 3% year over year, giving it a 19% pretax margin for Q4’14.
For the year 2014, though, the pretax profit margin was 20% on net income of about $3.2 billion compared with a pretax margin of 18% in 2013 on net income of roughly $1.5 billion. Revenue for the unit grew 5% to $14.9 billion.
“Wealth Management continues to improve,” said CEO James Gorman on an analysts call, according to Reuters, and is “on a clear path” to hit 22%-25%.