U.S. Bancorp is an obvious choice for outperforming in a fiscal cliff scenario recession, as the company sailed through the credit crisis, and is the strongest and most consistent earner among the nation's largest bank holding companies, with an operating return on average assets (ROA) of 1.59% for the 12-month period ended June 30, according to Thomson Reuters Bank Insight. Over the same period, the company's return on average equity (ROE) was 14.79%. Following M&T Bancorp's agreement to acquire the troubled Hudson City Bancorp ( HCBK) for about $3.7 billion in stock and cash, or roughly 80% of Hudson City's tangible book value, KBW analyst Brian Klock reiterated his "Market Perform" rating for M&T, saying the bank "has proven to be an effective and efficient acquirer and has proved, in our view, to be disciplined in pricing and diligent in achieving projected cost savings." M&T's ROA for the 12-month period ended June 30 was 0.97%, while the company's ROE was 8.16%, according to Thomson Reuters Bank insight. Klock estimates that the company will earn $6.75 a share this year, followed by EPS of $7.50 in 2013.