Blackstone Profit Declines

Feb 2 2012 | 11:00am ET

The Blackstone Group said today its fourth-quarter profit dropped by 12%.

The private-equity giant's economic net income fell to $449.9 million from $512.7 million. The per-share return was in line with analysts' estimates.

For the full year, Blackstone's net income increased marginally to $1.584 billion.

"Despite volatile markets and struggling economies, Blackstone had strong performance in 2011," CEO Stephen Schwarzman said. "Our investors view us as a critical partner, helping them protect and grow their capital. We again reported net inflows in every one of our businesses with record fee-earning assets under management of $137 billion at year end, up 25% year over year."

Most of that increase came in Blackstone's private equity funds, whose assets rose from $24.2 billion to $37.2 billion. Hedge fund assets increased 14%, to $37.8 billion. Management fees consequently rose 15% year-on-year and performance fees 27%.

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