It will be hard to ignore the US banking sector over the coming week as the sector reports quarterly earnings, and it kicked off on Friday with results from JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup and Wells Fargo.
Rising share prices in the past few months have underlined the confidence investors have in the sector, and its ability to generate returns.
"Financials" has been the best performing of the 10 industry sectors on the S&P 500 over the last three months, climbing nearly 10%.
Over the longer term, the financial sector has also outperformed all others over the last five years, with a cumulative climb of 110%.
What financial crisis?
It’s almost like the financial crisis never happened. Indeed, Donald Trump is moving forward with plans to relax banking regulations – what the President calls "a major haircut".
Banking executives love it. Jamie Dimon, chairman and chief executive of JPMorgan Chase welcomed Trump's efforts in his annual letter to shareholders in April.
He wrote: "Regulations must be flexible enough to allow banks to act as a bulwark against [financial crises], rather than forcing them into a defensive crouch that will only make things worse."
US banks have been doing all they can to encourage investors. Capital returns in the form of higher dividends and share buybacks have been common since regulatory stress tests gave banks the all-clear.
JPMorgan Chase, which was the first bank to report second-quarter earnings on Friday, has said it will buy back nearly $20bn worth of stock and is to raise its dividend to 56 cents a share from 50 cents.
Citigroup and Wells Fargo, also reporting on Friday, announced buybacks this year of $19bn each.
Investors have been quick to respond, expecting bumper returns during this earnings season.
Data from State Street show the Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund, which tracks the financials sector on the S&P 500, has seen net inflows of more than $660m in the past seven trading days. Year to date inflows are nearly $1.5bn.
Since the start of the year the Financial Select ETF has returned nearly 8%.
What are the numbers?
Starting with JPMorgan Chase, the Wall Street stalwart reported record quarterly net income and earnings per share (EPS) of $1.82, bettering analyst forecasts of $1.59 by some margin.