American Express Co. Chief Executive Stephen Squeri recently provided insights into the company’s performance in the fourth quarter. Speaking at a Goldman Sachs conference, Squeri highlighted the fluctuations in growth rates throughout the year.
According to Squeri, American Express experienced an 8% overall billings growth in the second quarter, which slightly decreased to 7% in the third quarter. However, in October, growth slowed down further, reflecting a trend seen across the industry.
Squeri attributed this shift to various factors, with a particular emphasis on the impact of travel and entertainment spending. Nevertheless, he mentioned that November indicated a recovery and aligned more closely with the company’s performance in the third quarter.
Notably, American Express benefited from robust U.S. shopping during Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday. The company’s services also demonstrated strength during this time.
Looking ahead, Squeri emphasized the company’s long-term goals. He reaffirmed the aspiration of achieving 10%-plus revenue growth in 2024 and beyond. Squeri assured stakeholders that this target is suitable for the company and that they remain focused on achieving it.
Furthermore, Squeri addressed the potential impact of an economic downturn on American Express. He asserted that even in a less favorable economic environment, the company’s customer base positions them well against competitors. While achieving mid-teens EPS growth may be challenging during a full-blown recession, they still expect to outperform their peers.
Despite these observations, American Express shares experienced a nearly 3% decline in afternoon trading on Tuesday.