Quarterly Profit Jumped for Two of the Biggest U.S. Banks

Both the reports exceeded the expectations of the analysts.

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Profits at JP Morgan and Citi jumped in the first quarter, an increase that was helped by higher interest rates.

According to the bank, increased banking and trading activity helped JPMorgan Chase to lift profits 17% from the same period in 2016; profits were $6.5bn.

The profit for Citigroup’s first quarter also gained 17% to $4.1bn on revenue gains from institutional clients. The revenue for Citi was up 3% in 2016 to $18.1bn.

Both the reports exceeded the expectations of the analysts.

Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan chief executive, said that the background to the results was healthy.

“US consumers and businesses are healthy overall, and with pro-growth initiatives and improving collaboration between government and business, the US economy can continue to improve.”

The CEO of Citigroup, Michael Corbat, saw a similarly positive picture, which he described in the following words:

“The momentum we saw across many of our businesses towards the end of last year carried into the first quarter, resulting in significantly better overall performance than a year ago.”

Record revenues from commercial banking at JP Morgan offset the troubles at the community and consumer-banking unit.

The revenue of the firm increased 6% from last year to $24.7bn.

There was a 28% fall in the provisions for credit losses; the amount fell to $1.3bn. The troubles in oil and gas industry had hurt results last year.

In other reports, Wells Fargo said it had earned $5.5bn in the first quarter; the figure is virtually unchanged from last year. The financial services company has been working to contain the fallout from fake consumer accounts scandal.