Bank of Montreal BMO
Q2 2013 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 05/29/2013

Operator: Good afternoon and welcome to the BMO Financial Group's Q2 2013 Earnings Release and Conference Call for May 29, 2013.

Your host for today is Ms. Sharon Haward-Laird, Head, Investor Relations. Ms. Sharon Haward-Laird, please go ahead.

Sharon Haward-Laird - Head, Investor Relations: Thank you. Good afternoon, everyone, and thanks for joining us today. Our agenda for today's investor presentation is as follows. We will begin the call with remarks from Bill Downe, BMO's CEO, followed by presentations from Tom Flynn, the Bank's Chief Financial Officer and Surjit Rajpal, our Chief Risk Officer.

After their presentations, we will have a short Q&A period where we will take questions from prequalified analysts. To give everyone an opportunity to participate, please keep it to one or two questions and then re-queue.

Also with us this afternoon to take questions are BMO's business unit heads; Tom Milroy from BMO Capital Markets; Gill Ouellette from the Private Client Group; Frank Techar, Head of P&C Canada; and Mark Furlong Head of P&C U.S.

On behalf of those speaking today, I note that forward-looking statements may be made during this call. Actual results could differ materially from forecasts, projections or conclusions in these statements. Information about material factors that could cause results to differ and the material assumptions underlying these forward-looking statements can be found in our Annual MD&A and our second quarter report to shareholders.

With that said, I would now like to turn things over to Bill.

William Downe - President and CEO, BMO Financial Group: Thank you, Sharon, and welcome to all of you on the call. This morning BMO reported solid Q2 results, the fifth consecutive quarter of adjusted earnings of C$1 billion. For the first six months of the year, adjusted EPS increased 4%, with operating group adjusted net income up 12%. Each of our businesses has grown from a year ago.

We continue to see good net income growth from our capital markets and traditional wealth businesses, and Personal and Commercial Banking had strong balance sheet growth in the quarter. We had a consistent strategy; it's well-explained, it's easy to understand and we haven't deviated from it. We've been deliberate about the path forward.

In the context of moderating growth in consumer debt in Canada, which appears to have plateaued, we have an advantage business mix, diversified both by geography and consumer segments. We're well-positioned given our U.S. businesses and expect to see continued benefits from our strength in Commercial Banking, Capital Markets and Wealth, important areas for growth in the current environment.

A few highlights from our second quarter results. Reported net income was C$975 million, or $C1.42 per share. On an adjusted basis, net income was C$997 million or C$1.46 per share, C$0.02 ahead of last year. Revenues were C$3.1 billion and ROE was 14.5%. Year-over-year adjusted expense growth was 1.9% and has been moderating as a result of our continued focus on efficiency. This will support future growth while creating value for customers that translates into financial performance for the Bank.

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