UBS posts $690 million fourth-quarter pre-tax earnings, missing expectations

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ZURICH (Jan 22): UBS on Tuesday posted a $690 million fourth-quarter pre-tax profit, hit by a slowdown in its flagship wealth management business and weaker earnings in its investment bank.

On an adjusted basis, fourth-quarter pre-tax profit fell to $862 million, less than the $1.038 billion forecast in the bank’s own analyst consensus summary.

The bank proposed a dividend of 0.70 Swiss francs ($0.7016) for 2018, up from 0.65 Swiss francs the prior year, and said it aimed to buy back up to $1 billion in shares in 2019.

Full-year net profit rose to $4.897 billion from $969 million in 2017, when a one-off 2.9 billion franc hit from U.S. tax reforms dampened results. Five analysts polled by Reuters on average had forecast a net profit of $4.906 billion for 2018.