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Regional Banks: Chicago Dip a Buy Signal?

Stocks in this article: FMBI PVTB WTFC

CHICAGO, Ill. ( TheStreet) -- A big earnings miss from Chicago-based PrivateBancorp (PVTB) highlighted the volatile trading in Chicago-based banks on Monday.

PrivateBancorp shares were down more than 13% on Monday afternoon for one of the market's biggest daily losses.

Last week, shares of PrivateBancorp had surged more than $3 per share, as the regional banking sector delivered strong earnings and the credit outlook in regional bank guidance improved.

PrivateBancorp and other Chicago banks also received a boost at the end of last week when a number of failed Chicago banking institutions became M&A targets.

By Monday afternoon, PrivateBancorp shares had more or less returned to the price at which they were trading before last weeks' rally ensued. The PrivateBancorp share price of $14.83 late in trading on Monday was still above its price last Wednesday, even after a one-day 13% drop.

Monday's trading level in PrivateBancorp shares was close to three times its average volume of 673,000 shares traded, at more than two million shares.

PrivateBancorp significantly underperformed the Street consensus in its earnings released early Monday morning. The bank's 35-cent-per-share loss was much worse than the Street expectation of a 20 cent loss.

The fact that loan loss provisions ticked up at PrivateBancorp -- non-performing loans were up in the first quarter, too -- bucked the credit improvements outlined in many regional bank earnings reports last week.

Still, at least one Street analyst expected from PrivateBancorp the exact performance that the bank delivered: Terry McEvoy of Oppenheimer & Co.

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