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Banks That Shun Risky Borrowers Offer Rosy View of U.S. Consumer

Jan. 17, 2020, 10:00 AM

With most U.S. households spending more and paying their bills on time, their creditors are feeling more confident than ever. To hear the CEOs of the nation’s largest banks tell it this week, rarely has the American consumer been in better shape.

But look deeper and it’s clear that view of the broad U.S. economy has its limits. They’re basing their assessments on clients lucky enough to bank with eight of the biggest lenders, with a combined $11 trillion in assets.

Roughly a decade after being burned by the most punishing financial crisis since the onset of the Great Depression,...

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