The Global Wealth and Investment Management (GWIM) arm of Bank of America (BofA) reported net income of $1.06bn for the fourth quarter of 2018, a 43% jump compared to $744m in the previous year.
The division’s total revenue for the quarter ended 31 December 2018 was $4.99bn, up 6% from $4.68bn in the same quarter of 2017. The bank attributed the rise in revenue to higher net interest income, higher asset management fees and gain on the sale of a non-core asset.
Non-interest expense at the unit rose 2% to $3.54bn on a year-on-year basis.
Assets under management totalled $1.02 trillion at the end of December 2018, versus $1.08 trillion a year ago. Client balances totalled $2.62 trillion as at 31 December 2018.
Overall, the banking group posted a net income of $7.28bn for the fourth quarter of 2018, a 208% jump compared to $2.36bn in the corresponding quarter of 2017. The surge is said to be due to continued strong operating leverage and asset quality and the recent tax reform.
The group’s total revenue increased 11% to $22.73bn from $20.43bn last year.
BofA chairman and CEO Brian Moynihan said: “Operating leverage based on disciplined expense management while investing in our future, solid asset quality, and loan and deposit growth drove this quarter’s results.
“In addition to lending and investing activities, we shared success in many ways: returning nearly $26 billion in capital to our shareholders; a second bonus since U.S. tax reform passed last year, impacting 95% of our teammates, to share success from our performance and the benefits of tax reduction; and more than $200 million of philanthropic giving to our communities.”