Popular Inc. Earnings: Misses Expectations Even with a Swing Up

Popular Inc. (NASDAQ:BPOP) climbed to a profit in the fourth quarter, but still came up short of analyst expectations. Popular is a publicly owned bank holding company that offers retail and commercial banking services through its main banking subsidiary, Banco Popular de Puerto Rico.

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Popular Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Reported a profit of $3 million (0 cents per diluted share) in the quarter. The bank had a net loss of $227.1 million or a loss of 22 cents per share in the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: BPOP fell short of the mean analyst estimate of 4 cents per share.

Quoting Management: Mr. Richard L. Carrin, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, said, “The year 2011 was a turnaround year for us. We were able to achieve operational profitability for the first time since 2006 by maintaining strong margins, producing strong and stable top line revenue, and continuing to reduce credit costs. We believe we can build on these results and make further progress in 2012. Based on our current credit trends and our current economic outlook for Puerto Rico and the U.S., we believe that we can continue to reduce credit costs and achieve net income of between $185 million and $200 million during 2012.”

Key Stats:

The company has now fallen short of estimates in the last two quarters. In the third quarter, it missed expectations by 3 cents with net income of 3 cents versus a mean estimate of net income of 6 cents per share.

Looking Forward: The outlook for the company’s results in the upcoming quarter is unfavorable. The average estimate for the first quarter of the next fiscal year is 6 cents per share, down from 7 cents ninety days ago. For the fiscal year, the average estimate has moved down from 23 cents a share to 20 cents over the last ninety days.

Competitors to Watch: Doral Financial Corp. (NYSE:DRL), Oriental Financial Group Inc. (NYSE:OFG), First BanCorp. (NYSE:FBP), Eurobancshares Inc. (EUBK), W Holding Company, Inc. (WHI), Bank of America Corp. (NYSE:BAC), SunTrust Banks, Inc. (NYSE:STI), Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC), and The Bank of Nova Scotia (NYSE:BNS).

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(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com