Dear Valued Visitor,

We have noticed that you are using an ad blocker software.

Although advertisements on the web pages may degrade your experience, our business certainly depends on them and we can only keep providing you high-quality research based articles as long as we can display ads on our pages.

To view this article, you can disable your ad blocker and refresh this page or simply login.

We only allow registered users to use ad blockers. You can sign up for free by clicking here or you can login if you are already a member.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), Bank of America Corp (BAC): The Biggest Banks on the S&P 500 (.INX)

There’s a new banking behemoth sitting on top of the world. At the beginning of last week, The Wall Street Journal reported that Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) has officially surpassed Industrial & Commercial Bank of China as the world’s largest bank by market capitalization — a crown formerly held by Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) until the collapse of its stock in 2007.

This got me thinking: When bank analysts normally discuss relative bank sizes, they’re referring to the balance sheet — that is, the cumulative value of assets. But there are other metrics that denote size as well. With this in mind, I’ve drawn up the following table showing the respective sizes of the four largest banks on the S&P 500 (S&P Indices:.INX) — the two previously mentioned plus Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) — according to four variables: assets, market capitalization, deposits, and capital.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) takes top honors with respect to assets, deposits, and capital. To say that the past five years have served as an extraordinary opportunity for the New York-based megabank would be an egregious understatement.

Beyond the fact that two of its formerly robust competitors, Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) and Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C), were forced to retrench in the face of mounting losses from the financial crisis, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) itself adroitly exploited the turmoil for its own benefit. In March 2008, it acquired Bear Stearns for pennies on the dollar, giving it access to one of the best primary brokerage operations on Wall Street. And six months later, it took over Washington Mutual, the nation’s largest savings and loan association with an extensive branch network centered on the West Coast.

Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) nevertheless surpasses JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), as well as all other banks in the world for that matter, in terms of market capitalization. The explanation is straightforward: Because investors perceive it to be more stable and profitable, they’ve bid up its valuation multiple to 1.9 times tangible book value. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), meanwhile, trades for 1.4 times the same metric.

The article The Biggest Banks on the S&P 500 originally appeared on Fool.com and is written by John Maxfield.

John Maxfield owns shares of Bank of America. The Motley Fool recommends Bank of America and Wells Fargo and (NYSE:WFC) owns shares of Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Loading Comments...