BB&T Corp.'s first-quarter earnings fell 39%, still beating analysts' estimates, as the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regional bank saw significantly lower securities gains than a year earlier.
Meanwhile, "the build in our allowance for credit losses slowed substantially compared to recent quarters because of better consumer and specialized lending credit trends," said Chairman and Chief Executive Kelly S. King.
Like many regionals, BB&T's biggest problems have been linked to real estate, but the bank has emerged from the financial crisis largely unscathed. The bank has repaid its portion of the Troubled Asset Relief Program and has reported better-than-expected results in recent quarters.
BB&T reported a profit of $194 million, or 27 cents a share, down from $318 million, or 48 cents, a year earlier. About 29% of last year's profit was made up of securities gains, a company spokesman said at the time. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had most recently forecast earnings of 23 cents.
Net interest income increased 15%, while non-interest income decreased 18% because of $153 million less in securities gains.
Credit-loss provisions were $575 million, down from $676 million a year earlier and $725 million in the prior quarter. Net charge-offs, or loans lenders don't think are collectible, rose to 1.84% of average loans from 1.58% and 1.83%, respectively. Nonperforming loans, those near default, climbed to 2.84% from 1.92% and 2.65%.
Shares closed at $35.11 Wednesday and were inactive premarket. The stock has risen 64% in the past year.