Banking and the FED: Is it still 2009?

While the Great Recession decimated fortunes and ruined the global economy, many believe that the road to recovery is complete. With unemployment rates below 5% and the FED preparing to raise rates, the market should act accordingly, right?

To some extent, it has. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is trading close to 18,000, and overall, the global markets have reacted similarly. Financial stocks have multiplied since their collapse in ’08-’09, and lending, particularly mortgaging, has resurrected. But not enough.

Companies such as BAC  and C have miles to go on the road to recovery from a stock price perspective. Bank of America reached an all-time high of nearly $55 in 2006; economic conditions are evolving to facilitate such pricing in the next decade. A meager $13 per share, this stock is a screaming buy. Sure, nobody likes Brian Moynihan or anything about the corporate structure of a massive bank like BofA, but it is worth more than a quarter of its previous all-time high.

This positive outlook is dependent on the FED raising rates in the coming quarters. At the most fundamental level, banks do best when they can charge interest on loans. As rates are expected to increase soon, this should facilitate growth in the banking industry.

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