Shares of Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) soared today, up by more than 6% at various points, and surpassing the $10 psychological barrier for the first time since July of last year. While this is unquestionably a welcome development to shareholders in the nation's second largest bank by assets, myself included, it nevertheless begs the question: How much higher could B of A fly?
It's important to accept these price movements for what they likely are -- that is, an overreaction to the news that Citigroup (NYSE:C) will slash as many as 11,000 jobs in the coming months. Suffice it to say, this isn't exactly good news for B of A. It's not like Citigroup is going out of business and B of A is picking up a considerable amount of its clients and/or deposits. Rather, Citigroup is merely following, albeit belatedly, in the footsteps of other megabanks like B of A in their efforts to streamline operations in the post-financial-crisis world of higher capital requirements and lower income from things like interchange and overdraft fees. As I discussed earlier today, most of Citigroup's job cuts are coming from back-office operations in its trading and corporate operations, not its domestic retail banking side.
That being said, I've made no secret of my opinion that B of A turned a corner in the third quarter and will likely be given the go-ahead from regulators to increase its dividend in the first half of next year. If this were to happen, it would be interpreted as evidence of fiscal strength and likely ignite a powerful rally in B of A's shares. However, as I've discussed the reasons for this opinion at length in previous columns, instead of doing so again, excuse me for simply encouraging you to read this piece that I wrote at the end of October.
It's also worth noting that I'm not alone in this opinion. In a new, in-depth report on B of A, our senior banking analyst Anand Chokkavelu concludes with the prediction that its shares could "double or triple over the next five years." Of course, whether Anand and I are right remains to be seen, as nobody can predict the future. But if we are, then this presents a massive opportunity to make money.
To see if you should join in this potentially massive rally, download Anand's in-depth report on B of A by clicking here now.
John Maxfield owns shares of Bank of America. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Wells Fargo. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.