This quarter's American Banker Analyst Round Table focused on the problems at Bank One Corp., on whether bank earnings can grow at a 15% annual rate, and on which stocks are the stars and which the dogs. The participants were Ronald Mandle of Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., Katrina Blecher of Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., Sean Ryan of Bear, Stearns & Co., Frank Suozzo of Alliance Capital Management LP, and American Banker staff.
As you know, Bank One Corp.'s stock dropped dramatically a few days ago when the company surprised investors, saying its fourth-quarter and 1999 earnings would fall below expectations. It attributed the problems primarily to its First USA credit card unit. Where does it go from here?RONALD MANDLE: There is some possibility that Bank One will sell First USA, or even the whole company. The company needs to beef up management of First USA because the person who is running it now - Bill Boardman - doesn't have much direct credit card operational experience. At a minimum, they would need to hire people from the outside to run that part of the business.