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Moynihan Mum On Dividend Makes Bank of America Shareholders Angry

Stocks in this article: BAC

Bank of America story updated from 10:34 a.m. with additional details throughout.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Bank of America  (BAC) investors looking for details from Brian Moynihan Wednesday about whether the company will seek a dividend increase or share buyback were disappointed, as the CEO declined to provide any new information on what the bank is seeking from the Federal Reserve.

Bank of America shares were falling 1% to $15.07 with declines accelerating after Moynihan began speaking at 10 a.m. at a conference hosted by Sanford Bernstein in New York. Shares gained 3.4% Tuesday as the Charlotte, N.C.-based institution submitted a revised capital plan to the Fed after discovering a $4 billion error in April. The Fed had approved the bank's request to raise its quarterly dividend by $0.05 per share and buy up to $4 billion of its own stock before the bank discovered the error, which had gone undetected since it acquired Merrill Lynch at the start of 2009.

In Wednesday's comments, Moynihan said that while M&A activity has picked up markedly in 2014, trading activity has been "somewhat more muted" with lower volatility. "It's been tough," he added.

The downbeat comments on trading come after Citigroup  (C) CFO John Gerspach said Tuesday at a Deutsche Bank conference that he expects trading revenues from equities and fixed income to decline by 20-25% in the second quarter compared to the second quarter of 2013. Asked about his progress resolving mortgage-related disputes, Moynihan said the major unresolved issue is a Department of Justice investigation tied to residential mortgage backed securities (RMBS).

Bank of America's latest quarterly filing states:

We are subject to inquiries and investigations, and may be subject to penalties and fines by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), state Attorneys General and other members of the RMBS Working Group of the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (collectively, the Governmental Authorities), regarding our residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) and other mortgage-related matters. We are also a party to civil litigation proceedings brought by the DOJ and certain other Governmental Authorities regarding our RMBS. We continue to cooperate with and have had discussions about a potential resolution of these matters with certain Governmental Authorities.

Federal Housing Finance Authority acting inspector Michael P. Stephens general alluded to the investigation, which also involves his office, at a conference last week. A similar investigation of JPMorgan Chase (JPM) cost the bank $13 billion.

Moynihan also implied that a mysterious $2.4 billion the bank added to its legal reserve in the first quarter was related to the DOJ proceedings.

"That's really the one that's left out there," he said, noting the bank "put money up last quarter," into its legal reserve. Moynihan added there is "unpredictability on it we just have to get through."

>>>Read More:

Bank of America Tries to Bounce Back From $4B Capital Blunder
Billions More in Mortgage Penalties Coming: Federal Regulator
Bank of America Exec Preaches Gospel of 'Too Big to Fail' Banking
Bank of America Adds $2.4B to Legal Reserve, Won't Say Why


Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.

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