Discover Financial Services' chief executive David Nelms said the company's long-term target is to achieve at least 10% earnings-per-share growth every year.

Nelms, speaking Thursday during a webcast of Discover's annual shareholders meeting, said it is targeting a return on equity of about 15%.

Discover reported last month a fiscal first-quarter loss of $122.2 million, or 22 cents per share, compared with earnings of $118.4 million, or 25 cents per share, a year earlier.

Earnings for the quarter that ended Feb. 28 took a hit from a $185 million addition to Discover's loan-loss reserves. Delinquency rates improved to 5.05% from 5.26% a year earlier and 5.31% in the previous quarter.

Discover also outlined in March plans to repay the $1.2 billion it got last year from the Treasury Department's Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Discover, of Riverwoods, Ill., became a bank holding company during the financial crisis, enabling it to participate in government-led efforts aimed at stabilizing the banking industry, including Tarp.

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