×

Morgan Stanley CEO Gorman: We're not taking 'victory laps'

After a big earnings beat, the bank's CEO says now is not the time to get "too excited."

James Gorman, chief executive officer of Morgan Stanley
Qilai Shen | Bloomberg | Getty Images
James Gorman, chief executive officer of Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley stock is higher Wednesday after a strong quarterly earnings report, but CEO James Gorman told CNBC it's no time for "victory laps" at the bank quite yet.

The major Wall Street banks posted solid quarterly results, with most beating analysts' expectations for earnings and revenue. The reports come after a painful first quarter, where big banks' trading and banking teams saw performance hammered by a volatile market.

"I don't get too excited,"Gorman said in an interview on CNBC after Morgan Stanley soundly beat earnings and revenue expectations for its second-quarter performance. On the other hand, "I don't get too down" when the bank struggles, he added.

Not everyone is so subdued on Morgan Stanley's quarter, of course. Ken Leon, equity analyst at S&P Global Market Intelligence, raised his price target for the bank's stock after its big earnings beat, saying he sees "opportunity for growth in client trading and underwriting," among other positives. The ratings agency maintained its buy opinion for Morgan Stanley shares, with a new 12-month price target of $33.

Gorman said he changed around his travel plans to visit London earlier this week. He told CNBC that he's been reassuring Morgan Stanley staffers as the bank begins to consider how it will deal with the Brexit vote, which is broadly expected to relocate potentially thousands of bankers — or cost them their jobs.

While Gorman expects to have to reshuffle some employees, he also said his U.K. staff will not be relocated wholesale.

"London is going to remain a critical part of our footprint," he said. "We're not having a knee-jerk reaction here. This is going to unfold over at least a five-year" timetable.