Bank of America CEO Said His Firm Should Overtake JPMorgan Chase

Bank of America Corp. chief executive officer Brian T. Moynihan said his firm should overtake JPMorgan Chase & Co. in direct-to-consumer mortgage lending in the next six months, according to the Financial Times.

Moynihan also said he has directed bankers to be “more aggressive” in lending to companies, according to the FT, citing an interview with the CEO.

Total mortgage originations at Bank of America plunged 37% to around $21 billion in the third quarter from a year earlier.

The Charlotte, N.C.-based company cut lending to pare assets deemed risky by regulators after its 2008 purchase of Countrywide Financial Corp. and shut a business that bought debt marketed by third-party firms.

Bank of America originated about $53 billion of retail mortgages in the first nine months of 2012, ranking it third behind San Francisco-based Wells Fargo & Co. and JPMorgan.

Larry DiRita, a Bank of America spokesman, didn’t return phone and e-mail messages seeking comment on the FT report.