Tomahawk, WI 01/13/2014 (BasicsMedia) –  Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) will be releasing its fourth quarter results this week. That the bank’s performance over the first nine months of 2013 was better than expected has raised anticipation for the fourth quarter. The bank which is the second largest lender in the U.S. by assets is expected to continue its growth when it reports Q4 on January 15.

Looking at how the bank has performance in 2013 leaves little doubt that it is poised to register the year as its best since 2007. Fiscal 2013 saw the bank boost its net income, post stock price gains, lowered losses and increased revenue collection. Owing to these strengths, the bank easily outperformed its peers and investor confidence has is quickly returning to BAC.

Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) was among the banks hardest hit by the mortgage market collapse in 2008. Since then the bank has put its best foot forward for recovery and it has attained remarkable milestone as can be seen in its improving balance sheet. The improving general U.S. economy is also playing into the bank’s recovery efforts.

Q4 results

Analysts are looking to have Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) report 248 percent earnings per share increase from the year before, this means posting $0.87 per share. If this prediction is met, BAC will note 2013 as its strongest performance since 2007.

Looking at peers, we can see Well Fargo (NYSE:WFC) which is also reporting this week, continue its quarterly profit increases streak. This mortgage major financial institution is expected to post fourth quarter data matching the third quarter results or beating that marginally. WFC’s exposure to mortgage market and the prevailing high interest rates is hurting its gains.

Investors will be keeping a close eye on these two major banks as they report their respective fourth quarter performance. The banks’ dominant presence in varied markets makes them good for investor assessment and deeper understanding of the U.S economy.

Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) made it a routine to beat Wall Street estimates in first three quarters of 2013. It remains to be seen whether it will be able to cap this stellar performance with positive data for Q4.

Project New BAC

The bank’s CEO Brian Moynihan came in to turnaround the company, an assignment that he has achieved by most measure. The company has moved from posting losses to posting growing profits quarter after quarter. Among the commitment which the bank made was to save $2 billion per quarter in operating cost by 2015.

When the bank checked last, it was saving more than $1.3 billion per quarter. This means that the bank is not only ahead of schedule, but nearing the end of its so-called Project New BAC. Basically, this suggests that the bank is getting many things right.

Among the things that the bank is due to reduce its operating cost include workforce reduction, sale of low-margin investments and reduction of brick and mortar branches.

Legal issues

The notable challenge that Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) is presently facing is the string of lawsuits connected to the collapse of the mortgage market in 2008. Though the bank dims it fit to face the problems head-on so that it can get them behind it, they are having impact on its cash reserve.

The bank has already spent or set aside $55 billion for legal spending since 2009. This means that Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) is not only having its attention distracted, but it is also losing a lot of money. Nonethless, it should excite investors that the bank is getting most of its troubles behind it and that in the next 18 months it will be done with the cases which will allow it undivided attention on growth.

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