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BB&T 1Q net income sinks on tax charge

Apr. 19, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- BB&T Corp. said Thursday that its net income fell by about half in the first quarter because of a big charge it took for setting aside money to cover a disputed tax liability.

BB&T runs more than 1,800 banks in 12 states, mostly in the Southeast. The bank said that conditions for lending had been "challenging," and average loans decreased. But the bank said there was improvement later in the quarter and it expects loan growth in the current period.

The company said improving credit quality allowed it to set aside $38 million, or 13 percent, less for a provision for soured loans. Charge-offs also dropped.

BB&T's quarterly income fell to $210 million, or 29 cents per share, from $431 million, or 61 cents per share. If the tax adjustment is excluded the company said it earned 69 cents per share in the latest quarter. Revenue rose to $2.46 billion from $2.34 billion.

Results matched expectations of analysts polled by FactSet.

Fifth Third Bancorp sees 1Q profit take dip

CINCINNATI -- Regional bank Fifth Third Bancorp's first-quarter net income dipped 2 percent as it made less from deposits and loans as well as fees and other sources.

But the results beat analysts' expectations, and Fifth Third shares edged higher Thursday.

CEO Kevin Kabat said credit trends continued to be favorable, with net charge-offs declining 10 percent. He also pointed to strength in commercial and industrial lending and in residential mortgage loans.

The Cincinnati company said that it earned $413 million, or 46 cents per share, for the three months ended March 31, down from $421 million, or 45 cents per share, a year ago.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet, on average, expected earnings of 39 cents a share.

Kentucky's jobless rate up to 8 percent in March

FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The Kentucky Office of Employment and Training is reporting that the state's jobless rate increased slightly in March to 8 percent from 7.9 percent in February.

State economist Manoj Shanker said in a statement Thursday that the rise is not a reason for concern, especially coming on the heels of six months of employment growth.

The trade, transportation and utilities sector lost 2,200 jobs in March. Among other major declines, the retail sector lost 1,900 positions, the leisure and hospitality sector shed 1,800, and the professional and business services sector lost 1,300.

The construction sector also was a big loser with 1,100 fewer jobs in March. The manufacturing sector lost 500 jobs. And the mining and logging sector lost 400 jobs.

The educational and health services sector added 600 jobs.