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AMERICAN EXPRESS CO. $51 (New York symbol AXP, Conservative Growth Portfolio, Finance sector; Shares outstanding: 1.2 billion; Market cap: $61.2 billion; Price-to-sales ratio: 1.9; Dividend yield: 1.4%; TSINetwork Rating: Average; www.americanexpress.com) earned $1.2 billion, or $1.03 a share, in the three months ended September 30, 2011, up 13.0% from $1.1 billion, or $0.90 a share, a year earlier. Loan-loss provisions fell 33.2%, to $249 million from $373 million. Amex’s cardholders have above-average credit scores and incomes, so they are less likely to fall behind on their payments.
Revenue in the quarter rose 8.6%, to $7.6 billion from $7.0 billion, as cardholders increased their spending by 16%.
American Express is still a hold.
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