Investors ratchet down bank capital return outlook

|By:, SA News Editor

It's a slow grind for bank capital returns (at least those subject to the CCAR), notes Goldman' Richard Ramsden, with payout ratios boosted just four percentage points to 62% this year. There are clear winners, he says: The credit card companies led by AXP and COF and the trust banks led by BK. Regional banks (KRE) boosted returns but generally fell short of expectations (with HBAN and PNC being the exceptions). Worst-performing were the TBTFs, though JPM and WFC were positives.

"CCAR highlighted the challenges large-caps have in returning excess capital," he says, with Citigroup's (C) failure a reminder the process is unpredictable. With all that excess capital remaining on the balance sheet, Ciit's 2015 goal of a 10% ROTCE appears unlikely to be met.

For Bank of America (BAC), it's resubmission - a better outcome than outright failure - reminds that even well-capitalized banks are "bound by stressed capital and could have trouble returning outsized capital."

ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, SEF, IYG, FXO, PFI, KBWB, FNCL, RKH, QABA, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, PSCF, KRS, FINZ, AIRR