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Visa profit, revenue beat analysts' estimates

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Visa Inc, the world's largest payments network operator, reported better-than-expected quarterly profit and revenue, boosted by the inclusion of Visa Europe's results and as customers spent more using its network.

[BENGALURU] Visa Inc, the world's largest payments network operator, reported better-than-expected quarterly profit and revenue, boosted by the inclusion of Visa Europe's results and as customers spent more using its network.

The company said total payments volume increased 47.1 per cent to US$1.86 trillion on a constant dollar basis in the fourth quarter ended Sept 30, from a year earlier.

"We have begun to see the benefits from our acquisition of Visa Europe and strong cost discipline helped our results," Chief Executive Charles Scharf said in a statement.

Mr Scharf last week said he would be stepping down effective Dec 1. The last big move in his four-year tenure was the consolidation of Visa's position as the world's largest payments processor with the US$23 billion deal to buy Visa Europe, a deal that was completed in June.

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The United States accounted for about 41 per cent of the total payments volume in the latest quarter, while Europe accounted for about 25 per cent, Visa said.

Cross-border volumes jumped 149 per cent, including Visa Europe and on a constant dollar basis.

Operating expenses rose 27 per cent to US$1.64 billion, mainly driven by the inclusion of Visa Europe, the company said.

Excluding special items, the company earned 78 US cents per share, beating the average analyst estimate of 73 US cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Total operating revenue rose 19.3 per cent to US$4.26 billion, brushing past expectations of US$4.23 billion.

For the current financial year, the company expects adjusted earnings per Class A share to grow in the mid-teens and net revenue to grow in the 16-18 per cent range, both on a nominal dollar basis.

Analysts were expecting earnings per share to rise 16.9 per cent and revenue to grow 19.6 per cent.

The uncertainty related to Brexit and economic weakness in Europe are likely to hurt both domestic and cross-border volumes in 2017, Chief Financial Officer Vasant Prabhu said in a post-earnings call.

Visa's shares were down 0.4 per cent in choppy trading after the bell.

Up to Monday's close of US$83.17, the company's shares had risen about 7.2 per cent this year, compared with a rise of about 6 per cent for MasterCard Inc.

MasterCard, San Francisco-based Visa's closest rival, is scheduled to report its fourth-quarter results on Oct 28.

REUTERS

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