BNY Mellon, Under Investor Pressure, Posts 9% Revenue Growth

(Bloomberg) -- Bank of New York Mellon Corp. Chief Executive Officer Charles Scharf should be able to keep his doubters at bay -- at least for awhile.

Scharf, who is under pressure to show his bank can generate organic growth, delivered $4.2 billion in revenue in the first quarter, a 9 percent expansion over the prior year’s period, which exceeded analyst expectations, according to an earnings report Thursday.

The revenue results, which were driven by year-over-year increases in stock prices and higher interest rates, helped boost BNY Mellon’s shares. Scharf has pledged to spend about $2.7 billion on technology this year, up from $2.4 billion in 2017, to improve performance.

“While increasing revenue growth and investing significantly in our technology platform remain strategic priorities, we continue to be disciplined across our total expense base,” Scharf said in the earnings statement.

BNY Mellon hasn’t grown as quickly as rivals Northern Trust Corp. and State Street Corp. At an investor day in March, Scharf was repeatedly peppered with questions about the steps he was taking to speed up expansion. In 2017, adjusted net revenue grew 2 percent at BNY Mellon, 9.4 percent at State Street and 8.3 percent at Northern Trust, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

BNY Mellon’s shares advanced 5.3 percent to $55.03 at 11:52 a.m., the biggest gain since 2012. They have climbed 2.2 percent this year compared with gains of 5.9 percent for State Street and 8.4 percent for Northern Trust.

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