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Opinion
Elisa Martinuzzi

BNP’s Traders Take the Fight to Wall Street

The French bank is one of the few European lenders with global markets ambitions. Its investment bank remains a work in progress, though. 

La France takes on Wall Street.

La France takes on Wall Street.

Photographer: Rick Maiman/Sygma

For the first time in nearly two years, BNP Paribas SA has posted a quarterly rebound in its trading income. That’s undoubtedly good news for one of the few remaining European banks with ambitions to take on Wall Street in the global markets business.

The lender’s shares bounced in Paris trading after its earnings were published on Thursday, a break with the recent underperformance relative to its European peers. Still, it wasn’t all good news. Behind the unexpected trading gain there were big winners and losers, offering a reminder of why France’s biggest bank is having to fix its investment bank.