JPMorgan Is Analysts' Favorite Big Bank Stock for 2014

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- JPMorgan Chase (JPM) continues to command unwavering analyst support headed into 2014.

The bank is the favorite stock among analysts, according to rankings complied by Bloomberg. Thirty one of 41 analysts recommend the stock, while eight rate it "hold" and just two have a "sell" rating on the stock. That adds up to a rating of 4.4 out of five, according to Bloomberg's scoring system -- the best among its peers. The next best ranking goes to Citigroup (C) at 4.25, followed by Wells Fargo (WFC) at 3.88, Morgan Stanley (MS) at 3.68, Bank of America (BAC) at 3.45 and Goldman Sachs (GS) at 3.33.

Shares of JPMorgan were down 0.11% to $56.25 mid-Friday morning, having returned 32% this year. The shares trade for 1.5 times tangible book value, according to Thomson Reuters Bank Insight, 9.4 times the consensus 2014 earnings estimate of $6.01 a share and 8.9 times the consensus 2015 EPS estimate of $6.36.

Following three years of record earnings growth, JPMorgan will see an earnings decline this year, because of the third-quarter net loss, springing from $9.15 billion in provisions for litigation reserves.

During the fourth quarter, the company has entered into a landmark $13 billion settlement of residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) investigations and claims by the Justice Department and other government authorities, as well as a $4.5 billion RMBS settlement with a group of institutional investors.

JPMorgan on Dec. 4 was also hit with $109 million in fines by the European Commission for its role as one of the banks participating in "bilateral cartels relating to interest rate derivatives denominated in Japanese yen."

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