The stock rebounded along with the broader market to start 2019, and those gains were capped off with a strong earnings report at the end of January.
Mastercard delivered another typical quarter of robust growth on the top and bottom line for the fourth quarter. Non-GAAP revenue increased 15% year over year, which translated to 18% growth in operating income. A lower tax rate and improved margins sent earnings per share up 36% over the year-ago quarter.
The only blemish in the quarter was management's mention of potential headwinds on the horizon stemming from trade tensions with China and the slowdown in the Chinese economy. However, looking at the big picture, Mastercard's future looks very bright.
Despite the potential obstacles with China, CEO Ajay Banga said they "continue to see a strong secular shift through electronic forms of payment, and we are driving healthy, double-digit volume and transaction growth for Mastercard across most of our markets."
Mastercard continues to expand its customer base, sign new deals with banks around the world, and see momentum in digital payments as more retailers and banks adopt contactless payments.
During the conference call to discuss the company's results, Banga said, "We continue to invest in the business for the long term and believe that we are very well-positioned to drive strong growth in the future."