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JPMorgan easily tops profit and revenue forecasts, sending shares higher

JPMorgan Chase on Friday easily topped expectations for its third-quarter results, saying it had seen strong loan growth.

The bank reported quarterly earnings of $1.58 per share on revenue of $25.51 billion. Analysts had expected earnings of $1.39 a share on about $24 billion in revenue, according to a consensus estimate from Thomson Reuters.

Shares of JPMorgan jumped about 1.7 percent when the market opened following the results announcement.

"It was a really strong quarter ... really across the board," Robert W. Baird analyst David George said, noting he was only expecting earnings per share of $1.38. "The upside was really broad based, but the big headline is just a blowout capital markets quarter — (fixed income markets revenue) up 48 percent, markets revenue up 33 percent year-over-year — so a good quarter from JPMorgan for sure."

Jamie Dimon, chairman and chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase
Laura McDermott | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Jamie Dimon, chairman and chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase

George added that there's "not really" any obvious weak spots in the quarter, but added that JPMorgan's significant strength in markets is "probably something that's not going to continue in Q4 and Q1."

Jamie Dimon, the bank's chairman and CEO, said JPMorgan saw growth in loans and deposits in the quarter.

"We delivered strong results this quarter with each of our businesses performing well," he said in a statement. "We had record net income in Commercial Banking and record loan balances in Asset Management. The Corporate & Investment Bank reported its best third quarter revenue. In the Consumer businesses, we grew both loans and deposits double-digits, and our new card product, Sapphire Reserve, has gotten a great response — underscoring our unwavering commitment to enhancing customer engagement."

JPMorgan's return on tangible common equity, a key performance measure, was 13 percent in the latest quarter, compared with the bank's longer-term target of about 15 percent.

Still, the company's net income fell to $6.29 billion in the third quarter from $6.8 billion for the same time last year — earnings per share fell against the third-quarter of 2015 from $1.68, though the company attributed the decline to taxes.

"Net income reflects higher income tax expense in the current quarter," the bank said, explaining that "the prior-year quarter included tax benefits of $2.2 billion due to the resolution of tax audits and the release of deferred taxes."

The bank also said Friday that it returned $3.8 billion to shareholders in the third quarter.

Total provisions for bad loans rose 86.4 percent to $1.27 billion.

Wall Street analysts who assign 52-week price targets to JPMorgan are betting that the stock will go higher, according to consensus data from FactSet, but some have voiced concern that the shares may have topped out amid a full valuation and slower investment banking trends.

In September, JPMorgan surpassed Wells Fargo to become the world's most valuable bank by market capitalization. That change came as JPMorgan rose slightly and Wells suffered the fallout of a phony customer account scandal.

Wells Fargo and Citi also report quarterly earnings on Friday.

In general, investors are looking at Friday's spate of bank earnings announcements to offer some indication of the strength of the economy. One key area being watched is loan growth, which can indicated the health of businesses and consumers.

Over the last three months, banks have been one of the top performing sectors, but those companies have struggled during the year with moderate economic growth, lowered expectations for a Federal Reserve interest rate hike and one of the worst starts to a year for the U.S. stock market.

—Reuters and CNBC's Evelyn Cheng contributed to this report.