Bank of America returns to profit
US giant Bank of America today revealed it returned to profit in the first three months of 2010 as the sector's recovery gathers pace.
BoA reported first quarter net income of $3.2bn (£2.1bn) against losses of $194m in the final three months of 2009.
Its profit cheer follows better-than-expected figures from fellow Wall Street major JPMorgan Chase earlier this week, when the group posted a 54 per cent hike in profits.
The strong start to America's bank earnings season has spurred on UK listed banks, with part-nationalised player Royal Bank of Scotland the biggest beneficiary today.
RBS shares soared more than 8 per cent - to the highest level for six months - thanks also to a positive note from broker Morgan Stanley, which raised its target price on the group and said sentiment for all the UK banks had improved amid the recent economic recovery.
Barclays and taxpayer-backed Lloyds Banking Group joined RBS in making share gains, up more than 2 per cent each.
BoA, which bought fellow investment bank Merrill Lynch at the height of the financial crisis, said its result reflected "a gradually improving economy".
Brian Moynihan, chief executive of BoA, said: "With each day that passes, the 2010 story appears to be one of continuing credit recovery."
Its better-than-expected profits came as strong trading revenue helped the bank offset continuing losses on consumer loans.
But BoA said losses in most consumer loans portfolios fell during the quarter, echoing similar comments from rival JP Morgan on Wednesday.
Money set aside by BoA to cover credit losses dropped by $3.6bn in the first quarter compared with a year earlier.
However, the figures showed the ongoing effect of the banking woes on BoA, with bad debt charges still at a mammoth $9.8 bn and the first quarter net profits down 24 per cent on a year ago.
- 1 Dentist who illegally killed Cecil the lion blames local guides for the scandal
- 2 Kate Winslet thanked 'particularly horrible' girl who bullied her at school after Titanic success
- 3 Norwich paedophile ring: Woman at centre of gang who made children 'sexual play things' guilty of 23 offences
- 4 Black and ethnic minority people twice as likely to be hit by Tory cuts than white people, report finds
- 5 Walter Palmer: American dentist revealed as the killer of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe
Dentist who illegally killed Cecil the lion blames local guides for the scandal
Kate Winslet thanked 'particularly horrible' girl who bullied her at school after Titanic success
Norwich paedophile ring: Woman at centre of gang who made children 'sexual play things' guilty of 23 offences
Black and ethnic minority people twice as likely to be hit by Tory cuts than white people, report finds
Walter Palmer: American dentist revealed as the killer of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
The last thing Labour needs is a leader like Jeremy Corbyn who people want to vote for
I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn't exist
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
Labour leadership contest: I would never quit the party, says Liz Kendall
iJobs Money & Business
£22500 - £24500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Inbound and outbound calls with...
£18000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing Insurance Bro...
£40 - 45k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Research Associate / Research Anal...
£20000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Summary: The Green Recruitm...