BBVA Compass Bancshares reported balanced revenue growth and expense control for the fourth quarter.
The $88.6 billion-asset company’s profit rose 38% from a year earlier, to $149.3 million, when adjusted to exclude goodwill impairment. Including $60 million in goodwill impairment, net income fell 2% to $89.4 million.
Total revenue rose 5% to $792.8 million. Net interest income totaled $531.8 million, while noninterest income was $261 million.
"Despite the challenging economic environment … we are encouraged by the momentum of our results during the second half of the year, particularly with respect to revenue growth in the fourth quarter," Onur Genç, BBVA Compass’ new president and CEO, said in a press release Wednesday.
Having felt the sting of the troubles afflicting the oil-and-gas sector early last year, BBVA has since worked to reduce its exposure to energy loans. The company’s energy loan book shrank by 15% last year, totaling $3.2 billion at Dec. 31.
In the fourth quarter, BBVA trimmed another $76 million of energy loans. The portfolio represented only 5.4% of the total loans as of Dec. 31, as compared to 6.3% a year earlier.
The health of the portfolio has also improved, partly due to efforts to actively manage it, the company said. Nonaccrual loans in the energy portfolio declined by 34% from the third quarter. Improved economic conditions for the energy industry were also a boon.
BBVA's loan-loss provision fell 51% from a year earlier, to $37.6 million.
"BBVA Compass is committed to maintaining sound underwriting standards, a strong risk profile and reserve levels that adequately reflect the make-up of our loan portfolio and economic conditions," Genç said.
While reducing its exposure to the oil-and-gas sector, Compass kept a lid on costs in the fourth quarter, reporting a 1% decrease in noninterest expense, to $554.2 million.