Here’s what investors should focus on when JPMorgan and Citigroup kick off bank earnings Friday

Jamie Dimon, chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase & Co., speaks during a House Financial Services Committee hearing in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, April 10, 2019.

Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Bank stocks have staged a fierce comeback from the lows of 2020, when investors feared that pandemic-related loan losses and low interest rates would squeeze the industry.

After being one of the least-loved sectors during most of last year, the KBW Bank Index and lenders including JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs are all up at least 11% in 2021.

Feeding into the momentum, analysts have turned bullish on the industry, hiking price targets on the anticipation that vaccines will allow for a reopening of the U.S. economy, while coming rounds of government stimulus will prop up borrowers, ultimately allowing banks to release some of the tens of billions of dollars set aside last year for loan losses.


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