BNP Paribas’ investment solutions (IS) unit which includes the banks’ wealth management unit reported declining revenues (4.1%) despite good assets under management (AuM) growth by the wealth business (8.6%) over the full-year period.
The wealth management and asset management unit’s revenues fell to 2.83bn ($3.77bn) from 2.95bn ($3.95) for the over the year period, but grew 1.8% in the fourth quarter 2012 when compared with the fourth quarter 2011.
AuM 265bn in 2012
The wealth unit reported AuM of 265bn for the year, up from 244bn from 2011.
Net asset flows were down at -0.5bn in the fourth quarter, compared to 0.8bn in the previous quarter.
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The French bank said that good asset inflows in wealth management where seen in its domestic markets and in Asia.
Operating expenses were also down 4.1% over the year, to 2.1bn in 2012 from 2.2bn in 2011, but were up 7.5% on a quarterly basis to 560m from 521m in the third quarter.
Operating income grew 2.2% over the year period, but was up 78.5% on a quarterly basis over the year, from 130m in Q4 2011 to 232m in Q4 2012.
Improving cost/income ratio for wealth unit
The cost/income ratio in its wealth unit was flat over the year at 75.1%, but down 0.5pt on a quarterly basis.
The lowering ratios were the result of the bank’s adaptation plan announced in September 2011, the bank said.
BNP Paribas is planning to expand its Asian investment and corporate businesses and hiring more than 1,300 staff in the region, BNP Paribas confirmed.