Wells Fargo & Co, which has been mired in litigation stemming from a sales scandal, posted a nearly flat first-quarter profit, hurt by lower mortgage banking revenue and higher expenses, Reuters reported. Profits dropped to $5.06 billion for the quarter ended March 31, down from $5.09 billion a year earlier. On a per share basis, profits beat estimates by 3 cents, rising to $1 from 99 cents over the one-year period. Analysts predicted earnings per share of 97 cents. Revenues dropped to $22 billion from $22.3 billion. Wells Fargo has been dealing with multiple lawsuits and regulatory inquiries since government investigations found in September that some of its employees had opened as many as two million accounts without customers' knowledge, but growing deposit balances and a stable level of account closings show that profitability in the long run should not be hampered.