Net revenues for the third quarter were € 6.6 billion, up 31% versus the third quarter 2004. The gain on the sale of shares in DaimlerChrysler AG accounted for seven percentage points of this increase. Total Sales and Trading revenues were € 2.9 billion, up 56%, our best result ever for a third quarter. Revenues from Sales and Trading (Equity) were up 155% to € 1.0 billion, while revenues from Sales and Trading (Debt and other products) rose 29% to € 1.9 billion. Origination and Advisory revenues rose 25% to € 571 million, our best result in eleven quarters. Within Private Clients and Asset Management (PCAM), revenues rose 11% versus the third quarter 2004 to € 2.2 billion, driven in part by revenue growth of 19% in Asset and Wealth Management. For the first nine months of 2005, Group net revenues rose 15% versus the prior year period to € 19.1 billion.
Provision for credit losses, which includes provisions for both loan losses and off-balance sheet exposures (the latter reported in noninterest expenses), was € 91 million in the third quarter, compared to € 80 million in the second quarter and € 58 million in the third quarter 2004. For the first nine months of 2005, provision for credit losses was € 252 million, down 11% versus the prior year period. Problem loans at the end of the third quarter were € 4.3 billion, down from € 4.6 billion at the end of the second quarter 2005. The ratio of problem loans to loans was 2.9% at the end of the third quarter, the lowest for five years, and down from 3.2% at the end of the second quarter. The coverage ratio was 49% at the end of both the third and second quarters of 2005. These favourable developments reflect tight credit risk management, the quality of the loan book and positive results of workout processes.
Noninterest expenses for the quarter were € 4.7 billion, an increase of 17% over the third quarter 2004. In the current quarter, noninterest expenses included restructuring expenses of € 156 million. For the first nine months of 2005, noninterest expenses, including restructuring expenses of € 440 million, were € 13.8 billion, compared to € 12.5 billion in the same period of 2004. The operating cost base, which excludes restructuring expenses and other items, was € 4.5 billion for the third quarter 2005, up 13% versus the third quarter 2004. Within the operating cost base, compensation and benefits costs rose 18%, driven by a rise in performance-related compensation, reflecting strong business results. Non-compensation costs rose 6%, driven by additions to provisions for legal exposures related to historical events. Without these litigation expenses, non-compensation expenses would have been essentially unchanged from the third quarter 2004, despite higher business volumes. For the first nine months, the operating cost base was € 13.3 billion, up 6% versus the same period last year. Compensation and benefits costs rose 10% from the prior year period, while non-compensation costs were essentially unchanged. The development of the operating cost base reflects sustained cost discipline and benefits of the Business Realignment Program.
Income before income taxes for the quarter was € 1.9 billion, up 87% from the third quarter 2004. This included restructuring expenses of € 156 million and a gain of € 337 million on the sale of shares in DaimlerChrysler AG. Pre-tax return on average active equity was 29% for the quarter. The gain on the sale of shares in DaimlerChrysler AG, partially offset by restructuring expenses, had a net positive impact on this ratio of three percentage points. For the first nine months of 2005, income before income taxes was € 5.1 billion, after restructuring expenses of € 440 million, a rise of 36% from the prior year period. For the first nine months, reported pre-tax return on average active equity was 28%. Before restructuring expenses and the gain on the sale of DaimlerChrysler AG shares, pre-tax return on average active equity for the first nine months was also 28%. This compares to our published target of 25% for the full year 2005.
Net income for the third quarter 2005 was € 1.0 billion, up 46% versus the third quarter of 2004. The after-tax contribution of the sale of shares in DaimlerChrysler AG was € 37 million, which was more than offset by the negative post-tax impact of restructuring expenses of € 97 million. For the first nine months of 2005, net income was € 3.0 billion, up 34% versus the same period in 2004.
The effective tax rate for the quarter was 47%, including the effect of tax reversal on the gain on the sale of shares in DaimlerChrysler AG. Excluding the tax reversal effect, the effective tax rate was 31%. For the first nine months, the effective tax rate was 40%, or 34% excluding tax reversal effects.
Diluted earnings per share for the quarter were € 1.89, up 48% versus € 1.28 in the third quarter 2004. For the first nine months of 2005, diluted earnings per share were € 5.95, up 44% versus € 4.13 in the same period last year.
The Tier I capital ratio at the end of the quarter was 9.0%, compared to 9.1% at the end of the second quarter, and thus remained at the top of the bank’s 8−9% target range. In the third quarter, we repurchased 2.5 million shares for a total consideration of € 184 million. Under the authorization of the last Annual General Meeting, we have the capacity to repurchase up to a total of 54.8 million shares.
The Business Realignment Program continued to progress during the quarter. All organizational alignments have been substantially completed, and personnel measures are proceeding on schedule. The original forecasts for headcount savings, cost savings and costs to achieve remain in place.