(REUTERS) -- JPMorgan Chase & Co's fourth-quarter earnings fell 23 percent, in line with Wall Street expectations, as the European debt crisis depressed trading and corporate deal-making.

However, Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said loan demand was improving. As the economy continues to recover, we are gratified to see signs of improvement in loan demand and credit quality, he said in a statement on Friday.

JPMorgan, the first major U.S. bank to announce results for the period, said net income was $3.72 billion, or 90 cents a share, down from $4.83 billion, or $1.12 a share, a year earlier.

Wall Street analysts, on average, had expected 90 cents a share, according to surveys by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The bank's shares fell 2.9 percent in premarket trading after the results were announced.

The company's quarter-end share count declined 4 percent from a year earlier as it bought back stock.

(Reporting by David Henry in New York; editing by John Wallace)