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Wall Street Can’t Stop Smashing Records While Pandemic Lingers

  • JPMorgan, Goldman, Citi make most money ever in a quarter
  • Market mania and deal surge boost companies’ earnings
Jamie Dimon, chairman and chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Jamie Dimon, chairman and chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase & Co.Photographer: Misha Friedman/Bloomberg

The U.S. struggled to emerge from the pandemic, and its biggest bank broke an earnings record. JPMorgan wasn’t alone -- Citigroup and Morgan Stanley did the same. And Goldman Sachs? Yes, Goldman too.

Wall Street thrived during 2020’s year of global catastrophe, and it’s doing even better in 2021. JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s soaring investment-banking fees boosted profit to $14.3 billion, the most the centuries-old firm has ever earned in a single quarter. Citigroup Inc., where fees from underwriting shares quadrupled, saw record quarterly profit of $7.94 billion. And Morgan Stanley posted its highest net revenue yet.