American Express Q4 Profit Rises, but Revenue Misses; Loan Losses Mount (AXP)

Credit card issuer American Express Company (AXP) late Thursday posted higher fourth quarter profits, but its revenue missed expectations loan loss provisions grew substantially.

The New York-based company reported fourth quarter net income of $1.19 billion, or $1.01 per share, compared with $1.06 billion, or 88 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose 7% from last year to $7.74 billion.

On average, Wall Street analysts expected a smaller profit of 98 cents per share, albeit on higher revenue of $7.92 billion.

On a sour note, AmEx said its loan-loss provisions rose to $409 million from $239 million in the same quarter last year. Loan-loss provisions refer to money set aside to cover bad loans.

American Express shares fell $1.05, or -2.1%, in premarket trading Friday.

The Bottom Line
Shares of American Express (AXP) have a 1.41% dividend yield, based on last night’s closing stock price of $50.95. The stock has technical support in the $46-$48 price area. If the shares can firm up, we see overhead resistance around the $52-$54 price levels.

American Express Company (AXP) is not recommended at this time, holding a DARS™ Rating of 3.4 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks, as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here.

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