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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Barclays, Citigroup and Credit Suisse Group AG

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – May 09, 2016 – announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), Bank of America Corp. (BAC), Barclays PLC (BCS), Citigroup Inc. (C) and Credit Suisse Group AG (CS).

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Here are highlights from Friday’s Analyst Blog:

Bank Stock Roundup: Litigation Dominates Headlines

Banking stocks have been under pressure over the last five trading days as litigations and probes grabbed headlines. Particularly,JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and Bank of America Corp. (BAC) led the way.

Banks have been facing legal headwinds pertaining to business malpractices in the pre-crisis period. The law-enforcement agencies are trying to resolve the issues in order to avoid lengthy litigations.

Further, deterioration in quality of the loans made to the energy companies continues to be a major headwind for banks. The “criticized” loans in commercial and industrial portfolio driven by the energy related loans are on an upswing which exhibits undue risks and significant losses.

Though many of the banks claim exposures to be manageable, risk grade migration within the energy portfolio may lead to higher provisions in the near term.

(Read: Bank Stock Roundup for the week ending Apr 29, 2016 )

Important Developments of the Week

1. Legal tussles seem never ending for big banks. Recently, seven major banks settled a private U.S. lawsuit in Manhattan federal court for a penalty amount of around $324 million. The banks in question were accused for manipulation of ISDAfix rates, a benchmark used to appraise interest rate derivatives, commercial real estate mortgages and structured debt securities.

The banks – BofA, Barclays PLC (BCS),Citigroup Inc. (C),Credit Suisse Group AG (CS), JPMorgan – are currently awaiting an approval from the court which will also settle the antitrust charges against the banks. Notably, 14 banks were sued by numerous pension funds and municipalities for manipulating the ISDAfix benchmark for personal gains in the 2009–2012 period (read more: Major Banks Sued for ISDAfix Rigging, Settle Case for $324M ).

2. According to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing, BofA has agreed to settle charges for a 6-year old legal issue by paying $190 million. The settlement will resolve the claim from Federal Home Loan Bank of Seattle related to mortgage-backed securities which were sold prior to the financial crisis. The bank was accused for misrepresenting the value of instrument by providing materially misleading statements.

3. The U.S. Justice Department’s criminal division is one of the regulators along with the SEC probing into JPMorgan’s hiring practices in Asia, according to the SEC filing. Regulators are investigating the violation of anti-bribery laws by the bank in 2013. JPMorgan is under the purview of regulators’ doubt for hiring the children and other relatives of well-established politicians and customers in China for acquiring business deals. “The firm is responding to and cooperating with these investigations,” JPMorgan stated in the filing.

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JPMORGAN CHASE (JPM): Free Stock Analysis Report
BANK OF AMER CP (BAC): Free Stock Analysis Report
BARCLAY PLC-ADR (BCS): Free Stock Analysis Report
CITIGROUP INC (C): Free Stock Analysis Report
CREDIT SUISSE (CS): Free Stock Analysis Report
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