Thomson Reuters disappoints Wall Street as financial firms cut back

Oliver Smith
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THOMSON Reuters yesterday reported a steeper-than-expected slump in fourth quarter earnings, causing its share price to drop over six per cent, hit by customer cutbacks primarily from financial institutions in Europe and emerging markets.

The news and information company forecast that 2014 revenue would be flat, compared with a two per cent increase to $12.5bn (£7.5bn) in 2013, excluding currency changes.

Fourth quarter revenues slipped three per cent year-on-year to $3.27bn and a loss of $351m, or 43 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $352m.

Chief executive James Smith said: “I am pleased that we were able to deliver on our full-year expectations, despite a tougher than expected external environment in the fourth quarter.”

Thomson Reuters said its flagship product for financial institutions, Eikon, was installed on 123,000 desktops as of 31 January 2014, compared with 96,000 at 30 September 2013.

“While the external headwinds were stronger than anticipated at year-end, particularly in Europe and the emerging markets, I am pleased with the progress we continued to make inside the company and with our customers. I am confident this progress will accelerate in 2014,” added Smith.

Shares in Thomson Reuters closed down at $37.75 in New York last night on the news.