Wall Street expected Citigroup to earn 65 cents a share in the quarter, according to First Call/Thomson Financial, which tracks analysts' estimates.
Citigroup had net earnings of $2.84 billion, or 55 cents a share, in the most recent fourth quarter, including another $491 million in charges related to the Associates deal. In the prior-year period, Citigroup earned $3.02 billion, or 58 cents a share, including a one-time $17 million gain.
It earned a record $14.14 billion for the whole year, up 25 percent from a year ago.
Citigroup's far-flung consumer finance operations profited from the company's purchase of leading consumer lender Associates First Capital. The $31 billion deal expanded Citigroup's reach overseas, particularly in Japan, as well as its credit card and commercial finance operations.
However, a fourth-quarter stock market slump hampered growth at its Salomon Smith Barney securities unit, which helps companies with new stock offerings and mergers. Nasdaq posted the worst performance in its history last year, curtailing customers' trading activities and forcing companies to pull planned stock offerings.
Profits at its global consumer group rose 25 percent to $1.47 billion in the fourth quarter, partly lifted by growth in its North American credit cards business and the performance of its Travelers Life and Annuity arm. Core income from banking and lending rose 27 percent in the fourth quarter to $761 million.
Profits at its global corporate and investment bank, which includes Salomon Smith Barney, rose 10 percent to $1.41 billion. At Salomon Smith Barney and its global relationship bank, profits fell 13 percent to $716 million because of an industry-wide slowdown in some investment banking and securities brokerage areas, as well as higher acquisition-related and compensation costs, Citigroup said. Profits from emerging markets corporate banking jumped 72 percent to a record $448 million.
Profits from its money management and private banking business rose 8 percent in the fourth quarter to $163 million, while profits at Associates fell to $289 million, compared with $394 million, after $146 million in charges in the 2000 quarter.
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Intel Meets Wall Street Expectations
Intel Corp.'s fourth-quarter results beat already lowered expectations, as the world's largest chip maker suffered from flagging personal computer sales and forecast first quarter sales would fall about 15 percent from the fourth quarter level.
But strong investment gains helped Intel, which reported income for the quarter ending Dec. 30 of $2.2 billion, or 32 cents per share. Excluding acquisition-related costs, income was $2.6 billion, or 38 cents per share, up from $2.4 billion, or 36 cents per share, in the year-ago period, the company said.
Analysts were expecting comparable results this quarter of 37 cents per share, according to a survey of analysts by First Call/Thomson Financial.
Revenue for the quarter was $8.70 billion, compared to $8.21 billion in the year-ago period.
Shares of Intel finished regular trading down 75 cents to $31.38 on the Nasdaq Stock Market. In after-hours trading, shares crept upward to $31.94.
"This was a year of record annual revenue and earnings; yet, slowing economic conditions impacted fourth-quarter growth and are causing near-term uncertainty," said Craig R. Barrett, president and chief executive officer.