Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Wells Fargo expected to have strong loan growth

Buoyed by "surging" commercial and industrial loans, overall loan growth is growing at large banks -- and Wells Fargo is likely one of the leaders, according to a research note from Stifel Nicolaus analysts.

According to data from the Federal Reserve, C&I loan balances grew more than 5 percent in the fourth quarter, a stronger pace than the quarter before. Credit card balances were up 2.6 percent. While commercial real estate balances are still down, they were by a smaller percentage.

Stifel analysts said banks with "healthy balance sheets," excess liquidity, and low funding costs will lead loan growth, and cited Wells Fargo as one of two banks (US Bancorp being the other), likely leading the pack.