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Bank stocks keep rolling through inauguration

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Bank stocks keep rolling through inauguration

U.S. bank and thrift stocks have easily outpaced the broader market since the 2016 election. Between Nov. 8, 2016, and Jan. 20, 2017, the SNL U.S. Bank and Thrift Index returned 21.0%, more than 3x the S&P 500's 6.6% return.

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In addition, all 20 of the largest U.S. banks and thrifts by market capitalization posted positive returns between Election Day and the inauguration, led by Bank of America Corp.'s 33.6% return.

Stock in JPMorgan Chase & Co., the country's largest bank, gained 20.1% as bank investors were cheered by the prospect of reduced regulation and increased interest margins. In a Jan. 13 earnings call, JPMorgan's chairman and CEO, Jamie Dimon, stated: "You will see banks be more aggressive and growing, opening branches in new cities, adding to loan portfolios, seeking out clients they don't have ... but that will wait for regulatory relief."

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Twenty major-exchange-traded stocks returned more than 40% between Nov. 8 and Jan. 20, led by Philadelphia-based Republic First Bancorp Inc.'s 98.7% blastoff. On Dec. 5, Republic First revealed that Vernon Hill II had been elected chairman of the board and that the company had completed a $100 million common stock raise. This news sent the company's stock surging 25% on Dec. 6.

Vernon Hill had previously founded Cherry Hill, N.J.-based Commerce Bancorp Inc., which sold to Toronto-Dominion Bank in 2008.

Republic First plans to open six new branches in New Jersey and Pennsylvania in 2017.

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