- Bank of America (BAC) saw its net interest widen to 2.27% during the third quarter from 2.15% in the second quarter. The third-quarter net interest margin was down slightly from 2.28% in the third quarter of 2011.
- For Citigroup (C), the third-quarter net interest margin was 2.84%, widening from 2.76% in the second quarter, and from 2.82% a year earlier, making it the only member of the big four club to see its NIM widen sequentially and year-over-year.
- JPMorgan Chase (Wells Fargo) saw its net interest margin narrow to 2.40% during the third quarter, from 2.42% the previous quarter, and 2.65% a year earlier.
- Wells Fargo (WFC) had the largest sequential decline in net interest margin during the third quarter among the big four. The NIM was 3.62%, narrowing from 3.83% in the second quarter, and 3.77% in the third quarter of 2011.
- KeyCorp's (KEY) third-quarter net interest margin was 3.19%, expanding from 2.99% in the second quarter and 3.04% in the third quarter of 2011.
- First Niagara Financial Group (FNFG) of Buffalo, N.Y., saw its third-quarter net interest margin expand to 3.51% from 3.18% the previous quarter and 3.41% a year earlier, as the company's funding cost declined from its net acquisition of roughly 100 branches from HSBC (HBC).
- M&T Bank (MTB) -- also headquartered in Buffalo, N.Y. -- saw its NIM expand to 3.75% in the third quarter from 3.68% the previous quarter, and 3.67% a year earlier. The sequential margin improvement "was predominantly due to a $1.6 billion increase in average loans and leases, largely offset by declines in average balances of lower yielding money-market assets and investment securities," according to the bank.
How Low Can Margins Go?
With the Fed continuing to pump money into the economy while boosting demand for U.S. Treasuries to clamp down on long-term rates, JPMorgan analyst Vivek Juneja on Friday said that "banks' ability to offset declining asset yields remains difficult and is exacerbated near term by high