BOSTON, Feb 5 (Reuters) - Hedge fund company Och-Ziff Capital Management Group reported lower quarterly profits on Thursday after it earned less in incentive income but still handily beat Wall Street analysts' estimates as assets under management climbed to a new record.
Fourth-quarter distributable earnings stood at $255.4 million or 50 cents per share, compared with $559.0 million or $1.15 per adjusted class A share a year ago.
The company, one of only a handful of publicly traded hedge fund companies, will pay a 47 cents per share dividend. Wall Street analysts had forecast earnings of 32 cents a share and a dividend of 31 cents a share, according to ThomsonReuters I/B/E/S.
Assets under management reached a record $47.5 billion at the end of the year, rising 18 percent from the previous year.
The New York-based company earned 52 percent less in incentive income, mainly because its funds gained less than they did in the previous year.
Hedge funds, unlike most mutual funds are able to charge an incentive fee on top of a management fee which climbs when funds perform well. But 2014 was a tougher year for many hedge funds with the average fund returning only around 3 percent amid worries about global growth as the price of oil dropped, accelerating its decline in the fourth quarter.
Revenue in the fourth quarter of last year stood at $687.6 million compared with $1.1 billion a year earlier.
Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss Editing by W Simon