The Financial Post reports in its Wednesday edition that the big banks are expected to beat analyst estimates for quarterly earnings as strength in capital markets and wealth management overrides sluggish non-mortgage loan growth, and as they release some reserves on relatively few loan losses. A Reuters dispatch to the Post says that many analysts have already been revising estimates higher for second-quarter profits at Royal Bank of Canada, TD, Bank of Nova Scotia, BMO, CIBC and National Bank of Canada, driven by improved credit conditions.
Analysts expect average core earnings per share for the top-six lenders in the three months through April to more than double from a year ago, when they set aside nearly $11-billion to cover potential bad loans. That would be 9.5 per cent lower from the previous quarter, largely due to fewer days in the period.
BMO kicks off earnings reporting on Wednesday. Steve Belisle, a portfolio manager at Manulife Investment Management, expects the banks to claw back some of the bad-loan reserves, although the amount of this remains uncertain.
Analyst estimates "don't usually expect credit recoveries," Mr. Belisle told Reuters. Capital markets businesses could post positive surprises.
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