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UBS: profit rises despite credit loss expenses

( - Swiss private bank UBS on Tuesday said that its operating income grew by 10% in the first quarter, despite a rise in credit loss expenses.

The world's largest wealth manager reported 7.9 billion dollars in first-quarter operating profit, up from 7.2 billion dollars a year ago

In another notable event, operating profit before tax at its wealth management division rose by 14%, resulting in the highest level since the financial crisis.

UBS' first-quarter results included credit loss expenses totaling 268 million dollars, which represents 5 basis points credit cost on the group's loan portfolio.

In all, net profit attributable to shareholders was 1.6 billion dollars, up 40% year-on-year, with diluted EPS of 0.43 dollar.

Its common equity Tier 1 (CET1) ratio - a closely watched measure of a bank's balance sheet strength - reached 12.8% from 13.7% at the end of the fourth quarter.

"We enter these turbulent times from a position of strength," assured CEO Sergio Ermotti.

Investors seemed to agree, with UBS shares trading up 4.9% on the SMI stock index on Tuesday morning.

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