Bank stocks have had somewhat of a rough time this year. Like the rest the of the market they have been subject to turbulence. However, Barron’s says that clear sailing might lay ahead, as the stocks are looking less risky and likely to have more gains. The reason why is that bank stocks have been showing less and less beta lately, meaning they are trading at less relative volatility to the market than previously. This will lower their cost of capital and keep things steadier as rates rise, which will be bullish for performance. According to one research analyst, “Higher rates will have a positive impact on earnings, loan growth appears to be picking up, and we expect further regulatory relief”.
FINSUM: Given that higher rates improve net interest margins for banks, and the fact that there is significant regulatory relief occurring, we are feeling optimistic.