Tue, Feb 26, 2019 - Page 10 News List

Wall Street banks tramped all over EU rivals in 2018


JPMorgan Chase & Co chairman Jamie Dimon listens during an Economic Club of New York event in New York on Jan. 16.

Photo: Bloomberg

JPMorgan Chase & Co gained some of the biggest shares in both fixed-income and equities trading last year, solidifying its leadership in one and nearing the top in the other. Deutsche Bank AG lost ground in both markets, while trying to restructure its business.

JPMorgan’s share of the US$77 billion pool of revenue that banks generated handling investors’ bets on bonds, currencies and commodities rose by more than a percentage point. Its cut of the US$53 billion market for trading stocks and related derivatives also increased. The fixed-income pie shared by all banks shrank 6 percent from 2017, but in equities, it grew 14 percent.

US banks trampled over their European rivals last year, gaining ground and holding five of the top six spots in rankings for both markets. Europe’s investment banks had reclaimed some share in 2017, but failed to maintain it, mostly as a harsher trading environment in last year’s second half hurt them more than it did US peers.

Most of Europe’s largest banks are carrying out restructuring programs that have spurred departures of top talent and some clients. Pressure to cut costs is heightened in Europe as interest rates remain negative, squeezing lending margins, and as financial markets remain fragmented.

Credit Suisse Group AG lost the most market share in equities trading, falling to No. 10 from No. 7 in 2017, followed by Deutsche Bank, which fell to No. 11 from No. 9.

In bond trading, BNP Paribas SA lost the most.

JPMorgan made the biggest gain in equities share, while Goldman Sachs Group Inc led winners in fixed income.

Barclays PLC bucked the trend among European banks, adding market share in both equities and fixed income, albeit much less than at US rivals.

Europe’s largest banks handled a majority of capital markets trading before they encountered the dual crises of the US mortgage meltdown and Europe’s sovereign-debt troubles. Since then, the firms have been in constant restructuring mode, trying to slash costs and improve profitability.

US banks moved faster to remake their businesses after the 2008 crisis and increased capital levels more aggressively, helping them rebuild customer confidence.

The five largest US investment banks accounted for 58 percent of the trading revenue pool last year, up from 46 percent in 2010. The nine largest European firms saw their share decline to 36 percent from 50 percent.

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