Och-Ziff Profit Down; Performance, Assets Up

May 2 2012 | 9:27am ET

Och-Ziff Capital Management's first-quarter income declined on higher taxes, but the firm's other results were universally positive.

The publicly-traded New York hedge fund said its distributable earnings for the first three months of the year were $57.3 million, down from $65.2 million in the year-earlier period. But the lower earnings met analysts' expectations and came on increased revenue, which rose from $138.4 million to $140.9 million.

Och-Ziff blamed the lower earnings on taxes: It's income taxes have increased and a tax distribution taken in the first quarter of last year did not recur. Based on generally accepted accounting principles, Och-Ziff's quarterly loss grew to $122.7 million from $95.5 million, due to expenses stemming from its initial public offering six years ago. Its dividend will be 10 cents per share, down from 13 cents last year but up from 4 cents in the fourth quarter.

Otherwise, everything is sunny at Och-Ziff. All four of its hedge funds were up in the first quarter, as were assets under management, which rose by $300 million in May.

"We generated consistent, positive, absolute returns with low volatility, and the strength of our performance reflects our intense focus on generating returns for our fund investors," CEO Daniel Och said.

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