NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The last time I discussed Bank of America (BAC), I told you the stock was fairly priced. I didn't see the justification for more gains, even though I was willing to look at the glass-half-full side of the story.Since then, however, the stock has shot up an additional 12% and breaking that all-important $15 mark last week. Look, I'm not blaming Bank of America. Other than smiling and saying "thank you," there's not much a company can do when the Street falls in love with its stock. While Bank of America has certainly become a pleasant turnaround story, I can't say that the stock, which closed Wednesday at $14.60, makes sense at this level -- not at a P/E of 31, which is more than three times that of JPMorgan Chase ( JPM). WFC), the deficits Bank of America still has to work with become more noticeable, including fee income, which was down 4% in the recent quarter due to lower trading. Granted, Bank of America's 6% growth in operating revenue was 5% better than Wells Fargo's, but the bank also posted a 1% sequential decline in net interest income. I won't disagree that there are still plenty of legacy issues impacting upon Bank of America's performance. But the same explanation can't be used to justify the premium the stock price commands, not when net interest margin (NIM) and earnings assets are underperforming. What's more, it also looks as if JPMorgan is outperforming Bank of America in mortgage originations.
Along similar lines, Bank of America's trading business continues to underperform. By contrast, this was one of JPMorgan's strongest areas, which helped JPMorgan offset weaknesses in other side of its business such as consumer lending. The good news, though, was that Bank of America did exceptionally better this quarter reducing expenses by 4%. This is a reversal of the surprise uptick in the expenses seen in the April quarter. As with JPMorgan and Wells Fargo, which have executed strongly in terms of cutting costs, I'm willing to credit Bank of America's management for the progress it has made in restructuring its business. But here, too, things need to be kept in perspective. To the extent that these recent performances justify the high expectations that the P/E ratio presumes, I don't believe it does. Follow @saintssense This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.