BankUnited beat analyst expectations for the fourth quarter of 2015 a few days after announcing it would stop making residential mortgage loans for consumers.
The Miami Lakes-based bank reported net income of $56.3 million for the fourth quarter, or 52 cents per diluted share, compared to $46.8 million, or 45 cents per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2014. Analysts had expected the company to hit 48 cents per share, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Annual net income was $251.7 million for 2015, compared to $204.2 million in 2014. But the bank said that excluding discrete income tax benefit its 2015 net income stood at $203.1 million.
Last week, BankUnited, which has branches in Florida and New York, said it was ending its retail residential mortgage business. The bank said it wasn’t profitable enough.
“When we took a look at this business, among other businesses, we realized it was the lowest margin business that we had…we decided we should exit this business,” chief operating officer Rajinder Singh said Thursday on an earnings call, according to the South Florida Business Journal. “This business requires a lot of scale …it was not very strategic for us.”
Much of BankUnited’s growth in the fourth quarter came from commercial loans, which were up $1.3 billion to $12.8 billion. New residential lending stayed flat at $2.9 billion.
Deposits rose to $16.9 billion in 2015, up from $13.5 billion at the end of 2014. The bank holds a five-star rating from Bauer Financial.