The move is a further step in attempts by Tidjane Thiam, the lender’s chief executive, to shift its business model away from riskier, capital-intensive trading and banking. First-quarter earnings released on Wednesday appeared to validate the strategy, as the company returned to a profit.
The banks Santander and Standard Chartered reported strong growth in their profit in the first quarter, continuing a trend of positive earnings among banks.
Profit rose 14 percent in the first three months at Santander, driven by gains in net interest income and fee revenue for the Spanish bank. Despite the increase in profit, the bank’s shares were down slightly in midmorning trading in Madrid on Wednesday.
Standard Chartered, which is based in Britain but generates much of its profit in Asia, said that its pretax profit nearly doubled to $990 million in the first quarter as the bank continued reshaping under Chief Executive William T. Winters.
Shares of Standard Chartered rose about 3 percent in midmorning trading in London. — CHAD BRAY
U.S. Steel Down Sharply on Poor Earnings
Shares of U.S. Steel plummeted more than 25 percent on Wednesday as investors reacted to weak first quarter earnings. Cheap Chinese imports are making it hard for the industrial icon to maintain margins, plant upgrades are overdue and so despite President Trump’s affinity for the steel industry, his administration hasn’t yet helped U.S. Steel.
Twitter Shares Up, Though Revenues Are Down
More than a year into Twitter’s efforts to turn around the company under the leadership of Jack Dorsey, its business is shrinking. And yet, investors seem to have finally been given a glimmer of hope for the future. Shares were up about 10 percent on Wednesday.
But first, the bad news.
On Wednesday, Twitter reported its first fall in revenue since its initial public offering in 2013, posting sales of $548 million in the first quarter, down 7 percent from a year earlier. But that beat investors’ low expectations for the company; Wall Street analysts had predicted revenue of $509 million.
McDonald’s Shelves Japan Stake Sale
Call it the Pokémon Go bounce.
After reporting strong sales for the first three months of the year, McDonald’s said it was putting off a plan to sell a stake in its Japan arm. Once unprofitable, the Japan operation now expects to be in the black.
Analysts credit popular menu items and a lift from its tie-in with Pokémon Go, which lured players to the fast-food chain. — CARLOS TEJADA