Goldman may have grabbed the earnings headlines this week, but American Express posted some impressive results last night.
The firm, which both lends and processes credit card transactions, added 1,400 employees, bumping headcount to 62,400.
At the same time, it set aside $1.5 billion in compensation, 14.7% more than it did in the year earlier period. Of course, it now has more mouths to feed given the staffing increase.
AmEx earned a record $1.2 billion in profit, up from $885 million in the first quarter of last year, a 33% increase. Who says credit card debt doesn't pay?
...While Wells Shrinks (FINS)
Meanwhile, Wells Fargo put up less thrilling earnings and said that it is cutting the equivalent of 4,500 mortgage writers as the market for new residential mortgages slows.
SVU Ponzi-Style (Reuters)
The FBI has turned to its serial killer trackers in the hunt for the next Madoff. A psychological profile, it seems, is more helpful than a suspicious balance sheet.
Struggling Swiss (WSJ)
After adding 1,200 bankers last year, UBS's investment bank is struggling with defections. Will it scale back its ambitions or shell out the bucks to buy another round of talent?
Buyout Building Boom (Bloomberg)
A record 439 real estate funds are being put together by private equity shops, including giants like Blackstone and Carlyle Group.
Snow Accident Triggers Promotions (FinancialNews)
RBS is expected to promote a new tier of i-banking lieutenants any day now. The shuffling is, in part, to accommodate a shorter schedule for Marco Mazzucchelli, the global head of banking who was seriously injured in an accident this winter.
Will Move for Work (NetNet)
A new study from the Minneapolis Fed shows that workers are more mobile than many thought in recent years. Despite underwater homes, interstate migration did not fall substantially during the Great Recession.
Death of Active Management? (FinancialNews)
Is individual stock-picking going the way of VCR repair? Not quite, but there is an increasing correlation among tickers.
Debt Down Under (Bloomberg)
Bond issuance in Australia is booming, luring firms like Citigroup, which left the country for a few years, and newcomers like Bank of America. The Aussie economy is forecast to grow at 4.25% this year.
Tsk tsk (FINS)
U.K. lawmakers are calling bonuses at state-supported banks "inappropriate." Wonder how long it took them to settle on that adjective.
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