KKR Financial’s 1Q earnings rise 4 percent

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Specialty finance company KKR Financial Holdings LLC said Wednesday that its first-quarter net income rose 4 percent as its costs and expenses fell sharply.

The San Francisco-based KKR reported earnings after paying preferred share distributions of $ 91.6 million, or 46 cents per share, in the three months ended March 31.

That compares with earnings of $ 88 million, or 48 cents per share, in the same period a year ago. An increase in the number of outstanding shares shaved 4 cents off the per-share results for the recent quarter.

The results nevertheless came in well above the 35 cents per share that Wall Street analysts expected, according to research firm FactSet.

Total revenue rose 2 percent to $ 140.5 million from $ 137.9 million in the first quarter. That’s above the $ 138.6 million in revenue that Wall Street expected.

Total costs and expenses fell 25 percent to $ 81 million in the first quarter from $ 107.8 million in 2012 period, mainly due to setting aside far less to cover bad loans. That was partly offset by higher costs related to its oil and gas investments, which grew through acquisitions over the past 12 months.

During the quarter, the company said it reduced high-yield debt 12 percent to $ 332.5 million. It also invested in four new commercial real estate projects during the quarter, bringing its total commercial real estate investments to seven.

KKR Financial’s board of directors declared a cash distribution of 21 cents per common share, payable May 28 to shareholders of record as of May 14.

KKR Financial Holdings is a unit of investment firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P.

Shares of the company rose 1 cent to $ 10.70 in morning trading Wednesday.

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Texas Instruments 1Q profit up 37 percent

DALLAS (AP) — Chipmaker Texas Instruments Inc. said Monday that its net income rose 37 percent in the first quarter as lower costs offset a revenue decline.

Profit grew to $ 362 million, or 32 cents per share, from $ 265 million, or 22 cents per share. Revenue slid 8 percent, to $ 2.89 billion from $ 3.12 billion.

Analysts were expecting net income of 31 cents per share and $ 2.85 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.

The company’s costs to make chips fell 5 percent to $ 1.51 billion, research and development spending slid 18 percent to $ 419 million and acquisition expenses fell 44 percent to $ 86 million.

The company said its analog revenue fell 1 percent to $ 1.65 billion, and embedded processing revenue rose 4 percent to $ 561 million. Other revenue fell 24 percent to $ 676 million.

The company has cut jobs as it pares back its wireless business. As the company’s biggest smartphone and tablet customers have begun developing their own chips, Texas Instruments is shifting the focus to industrial and automotive customers.

Texas Instruments said it expects to report net income of 37 to 45 cents per share and $ 2.93 billion to $ 3.17 billion in revenue in the current quarter. That’s in line with analysts’ prediction of profit of 42 cents per share on revenue of $ 3.04 billion.

Shares of the Dallas company gained 56 cents to close at $ 34.81 on Monday. The stock added 29 cents to $ 35.10 in aftermarket trading.

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Google’s Internet revenue grew 23 percent in first quarter

By Alexei Oreskovic

(Reuters) – Google Inc’s core Internet business grew net revenue 23 percent in the first quarter to a better-than-expected $ 9.99 billion as the company’s search advertising business continued to show strength.

Shares of Google, which reached an all-time high of $ 844 in March, were up 2 percent to $ 783.08 in afterhours trading on Thursday.

The company’s average cost-per-click, a critical metric that refers to the price advertisers pay the Internet search giant, declined 4 percent from a year ago, the sixth consecutive quarter of declines but an improvement over the fourth quarter’s 6 percent slide.

“Google.com seemed to be doing fine,” said Macquarie analyst Ben Schachter. “Considering some of the scares around Europe, it’s not nearly as bad as it could’ve been.”

Wall Street had worried that Google’s growth will slow and ad rates decline as advertising moves on to smartphones and tablets.

The company’s main Internet business generated $ 9.99 billion in first-quarter net revenue, which excludes fees paid to partner websites, compared to $ 8.14 billion in the first quarter of 2012.

Seven analysts polled by Reuters had yielded an average forecast of $ 9.78 billion.

Overall first quarter net income, including its money-losing Motorola Mobility mobile phone business, was $ 3.35 billion or $ 9.94 per share. That compares with net income of $ 2.89 billion or $ 8.75 per share in the year-ago period, before Google acquired Motorola.

Excluding certain items, Google earned $ 11.58 a share, versus $ 10.08 a share a year earlier.

Consolidated revenue in the first quarter was $ 13.97 billion, versus $ 10.65 billion in the year-ago period.

(Additional reporting by Gerry Shih; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

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E-Trade 1st-quarter profit slumps 44 percent

NEW YORK (AP) — Online broker E-Trade Financial Corp. said that its first-quarter profit fell 44 percent as revenue declined and a tax benefit wasn’t repeated.

E-Trade said net income dropped to $ 35 million, or 12 cents per share, in the first three months of the year, down from $ 63 million, or 22 cents per share, in the same period a year earlier. The earnings were in line with analyst’s estimates, according to FactSet.

Revenue fell 14 percent to $ 420 million from $ 489 million from the same period a year ago. E-Trade, which is based in New York, said it added 30,000 net new accounts, compared with 10,000 in the last three months of 2012, and 46,000 in the same period a year ago.

Paul Idzik, who was appointed CEO in January, said that his focus would be to expand the company’s core business.

“I see a meaningful opportunity for E-Trade — both in terms of driving a superior customer experience, and in creating value for shareholders,” Idzik said in a company statement.

The average commission per trade rose to $ 11.30, compared with $ 11.04 in the first quarter a year ago.

E-Trade shares rose 4.6 percent to $ 9.98 in after-hours trading, following the release of the report. The company’s stock was up 6.6 percent for the year at $ 9.54 at the close of trading Thursday.

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Tata Consultancy’s quarterly profit up 13 percent

MUMBAI, India (AP) — India’s top outsourcing company Tata Consultancy Services says quarterly profit rose 13 percent to $ 663 million as business from Europe emerged from a downturn.

CEO Natarajan Chandrasekaran said Wednesday that TCS added 52 new clients in the quarter and predicted stronger growth in fiscal 2014, which began in April.

Revenue for the quarter was up 14.8 percent to $ 3 billion. Profit for the fiscal year ended March rose 15.6 percent to $ 2.6 billion.

The quarterly and annual profits were in line with the average forecasts of analysts polled by FactSet.

The company’s stock was down 1.7 percent to 1,459 rupees ($ 26.91) in Wednesday trading ahead of the results, which were released after markets closed.

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