JPMorgan Chase & Co. decisively moved the markets on Friday with its reported record Q1 revenue and earnings; CEO Jamie Dimon's positive economic outlook helped boost not only the stock, but the market in general.
And that's about as good as it got for the big banks… From there, it seemed like no amount of good news – and there was some good news – was enough to pull stocks out of the funk.
Wells Fargo also reported good earnings and a decent outlook, but its volume of loans and deposits were down more than analysts were expecting. WFC shares were up in the Friday pre-market – perhaps on JPMorgan's coattails… and promptly plummeted for the rest of the day.
In Monday pre-market moves, two more of the "Big Six" U.S. banks reported earnings, and it didn't go that well. Goldman Sachs tumbled 3%; earnings beat estimates… but revenue dropped 13% year over year. Citigroup also reported strong earnings and reduced revenue, though it had much less of a drop than Goldman. Citigroup's stock "only" fell 0.5%.
On balance, a dreary, lackluster story… so far.
But that's not the whole story.