Nine Days of Flattening Keep Banks From Joining the Party

The interest-rate premium offered by 30-year Treasuries over five-year notes, the so-called yield curve, shrank for nine straight sessions through Tuesday, helping to damp enthusiasm for U.S. bank shares. The S&P 500 Index has been reaching new all-time highs repeatedly of late, but lenders, whose profitability relies in part on the difference between shorter- and longer-term rates, have seen their share prices dip over that period of yield-curve flattening.

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