Mortgages drive U.S. bank Q3 profit surge

Oct 12, 2012, 3:16 PM EDT
A Wells Fargo sign is seen outside a banking branch in New York in this July 13, 2012, file photo.
REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton/Files

JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo announced strong earnings to kick off the quarterly reporting season for the U.S.'s big banks. Homeowners in large numbers have been refinancing mortgage loans at lower interest rates. JPMorgan Chase's earnings were up 34% to a record $5.7 billion despite a "modest loss" on its London Whale derivatives trading. Wells Fargo's earnings rose 22% to 4.9 billion.