American Express Co , the largest credit card company by sales, reported quarterly earnings that fell in line with expectations on Thursday, hurt by weakness in cardmember spending, record credit losses, restructuring charges and the repayment of government funds.

Net income fell to $337 million, or 9 cents per share, from $653 million, or 56 cents per share, a year earlier.

Earnings from continuing operations declined to $342 million or 9 cents per share from $660 million or 56 cents in the same quarter last year.

The results included a reduction of 18 cents per share related to the repurchase of preferred shares from the U.S. Treasury Department.

Excluding that charge, earnings per share were in line with analysts expectations of 27 cents, according to Reuters Estimates.

Total revenue fell 18 percent to $6.1 billion, while consolidated expenses fell 16 percent to $4.1 billion, helped by a restructuring plan.

In the U.S. card service business, net charge-offs -- a measure of bad loan write-offs -- rose to 10.0 percent from 8.5 percent in the previous quarter.

Although it is still too early to point to any sure signs of an economic recovery, the number of cardmembers who are falling behind in their payments, the volume of bankruptcy filings and the level of loan write-offs were better than we had expected, Chief Executive Kenneth Chenault said in a statement.

Provisions for losses decreased 22 percent to $1.2 billion.

American Express shares fell 5 percent to $27.99 in after-hours trading after closing at $29.45 on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Juan Lagorio; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)