Ameriprise Financial said its total operating earnings fell 13 percent year-over-year to $379 million, or $2.23 per share, in the second quarter, missing analysts’ expectations by 3 cents, according to Seeking Alpha. The firm’s total net revenue of $2.87 billion beat analysts’ expectations by $10 million, although it was down 8 percent from the year-ago period.
“In this environment, clients remain cautious, which is reflected in slower activity and high cash balances,” said Jim Cracchiolo, chairman and CEO of Ameriprise, in a statement. Cracchiolo attributes decreased client activity in the last quarter partly to the United Kingdom referendum vote that took place on June 23.
Retail client assets grew to a record $462 billion for the quarter, up 2 percent from a year ago.
From the first quarter of this year, net revenue per financial advisor slid from $510 million to $507 million—marking the fourth straight quarter production has remained stagnant or declined.
Advisor headcount was down eight from the first quarter to a total of 9,758. But that is up from 9,721 a year ago.
In a company conference call, Cracchiolo said that second quarter performance in the advice and wealth management segment has not been affected by the looming DOL rule, stating that Ameriprise works closely with advisors to ensure they have the training and support to handle new regulation.
While Ameriprise continues to invest in and expand its digital capabilities, including robo advice, Cracchiolo said he was confident in a long-term business model that relies on living, breathing financial advisors.
“[Clients] want more than something called ‘robo,’” he said. “They want more than something that’s a computer model.”