JPMorgan Chase & Co. released its first quarter earnings today, and the report included a couple of nuggets about its auto finance operation.
Overall, the bank earned $2.1 billion, or $0.40 per share, during the first quarter, down from $2.4 billion, or $0.67 per share, in the same period a year ago. Even though earnings were down, the figure easily beat analysts’ estimates. Analysts had been expecting Chase to earn $0.32 per share.
Chase originated $5.6 billion of auto loans during the first three months of 2009, down 22% from the same period of 2008, but double the amount it originated in the fourth quarter of 2008.
As well, Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said that Chase’s credit exposure to the domestic auto industry was “well less than $1 billion.”
Charge-offs across its lending portfolio increased to 4.9% from 2.68% last year. The bank also cited higher credit costs in its retail financial services unit, but did not specifically cite the auto finance unit.