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Big banks dial up buybacks after stress-testing win

U.S. banks mostly fared well in the annual regulatory exams, which will benefit shareholders next.

A number of banks are ratcheting up buybacks and dividends after passing stress tests, which marks good news for their investors in a difficult year.

The announcement of dividends and buybacks comes in a year where big banks in the U.S. and abroad have seen their share values hammered by market volatility and decreasing expectations that the Fed will raise interest rates this year, which is expected to have a substantial impact on their revenue and forward-looking projections.

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Morgan Stanley, which can proceed with capital redistributions despite the Fed's decision to require it to resubmit a capital plan, increased its dividend to 20 cents a share from 15 cents a share and announced a $3.5-billion stock buyback.

Huntington Bancshares announced a dividend increase to 8 cents a share from 7 cents a share.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch increased its dividend by 50 percent, to $0.075 per share, and authorized a $5 billion stock buyback.

PNC Financial Services increased its dividend by 4 cents, to 55 cents a share, and announced a share repurchase program of $2 billion.

JPMorgan Chase announced a buyback plan for $10.6 billion in stock and will continue its current common stock dividend of 48 cents a share.

Citigroup announced that it will buy back $8.6 billion in stock and will increase its dividend to 16 cents a share.

Fifth Third will increase its quarterly stock dividend to 14 cents a share in the fourth quarter and will make share repurchases of up to $660 million, the bank said.

Wells Fargo did not change plans; but the bank will make a 38 cent dividend, as previously stated.

Northern Trust will increase its dividend to 38 cents a share from 36 cents a share and plans a share repurchase of up to $275 million.

BNY Mellon will repurchase $2.7 billion in common stock and raised its dividend to 19 cents a share from 17 cents a share.

KeyCorp will buy up to $350 million in common shares back, and increased its dividend to $0.095 per share.

American Express boosted its dividend to 32 cents a share and will buy back $3.3 billion in common shares.

SunTrust will increase its dividend to 26 cents a share from 24 cents a share and will repurchase $960 million in stock.

Comerica said in a statement its board will consider increasing its dividend to 23 cents a share, marking a 4.5 percent increase. The bank also said it plans $440 million in repurchases.

Ally Financial is looking to repurchase up to $700 million in common stock and to declare an 8 cent dividend.

Capital One said in a statement it expects to maintain a 40 cent dividend and said it will repurchase $2.5 billion in stock.

State Street will repurchase up to $1.4 billion of its common stock and plans to increase its dividend to 38 cents a share from 34 cents a share.

Discover Financial aims to repurchase up to $1.95 billion in stock and said it wants to increase its dividend to 30 cents a share from 28 cents a share.

BB&T aims to increase its quarterly dividend to 30 cents a share. The plan also includes share buybacks of up to $640 million starting in the third quarter of 2016.