April 19 American Express Co on
Wednesday posted a better-than-expected first-quarter profit,
helped in part by higher spending by card members, and the
company's shares rose 2.3 percent in trading after the bell.
AmEx's net income attributable to shareholders fell to $1.21
billion, or $1.34 per share, in quarter ended March 31 from
$1.39 billion, or $1.45 per share, a year earlier which included
certain subsequently discontinued co-brand partnerships.
Analysts on average had estimated a profit of $1.28 per
share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
"Card Member spending grew 8 percent, adjusted for changes
in foreign exchange rates and Costco-related business that was
included in the prior year," Chief Executive Kenneth Chenault
said in a statement.
AmEx faces cut-throat competition, particularly for premium
customers, as card issuers offer ever richer levels of rewards
to acquire and keep customers.
The company last month fattened up rewards on its Platinum
charge cards to fortify its high-end market against JPMorgan
Chase & Co and Citigroup Inc.
It has also boosted spending on marketing and promotion
efforts as well as on premium rewards for its customers, to hold
(Reporting by Pallavi Dewan and Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru;
Editing by Savio D'Souza)