The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency reported that banks' revenue from derivatives trading was up 7% to $7.5 billion in the first quarter, compared with Q1 2012. "The improvement in the U.S. economy and low interest rates led to significant capital-raising activity in the bond markets," said Kurt Wilhelm, director of the Financial Markets Group at the OCC. "That led to strong client demand for risk-management products as investors increased their hedging and positioning against potential changes in monetary policy."

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