Markets Right Now: Banks lead US stocks higher at midday

FeaturesAssociated Press

The latest on developments in financial markets (all times local):

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11:45 a.m.

Stocks are slightly higher as financial companies climb but retailers and big-dividend stocks slide.

Investors were encouraged to see a pickup in industrial production in August. That helped send bond yields higher Friday.

Higher bond yields can mean higher profits for banks and other lenders because they can charge more to lend money. LendingTree rose 2.7 percent.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 3 percent.

Retailers were weak after the Commerce Department reported that Americans slowed down their spending in August. Gap lost 1.7 percent.

The S&P 500 index rose 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,906.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 54 points, or 0.2 percent, to 26,199. The Nasdaq composite gained 13 points, or 0.2 percent, to 8,028.

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9:40 a.m.

Stocks are opening with modest gains after the Federal Reserve said U.S. industrial production jumped in August.

The central bank said production of cars, oil and natural gas rose while output at mines and utilities also grew.

Bond yields rose Friday, sending bank stocks higher. JPMorgan Chase gained 0.7 percent and State Street rose 1.1 percent.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 3 percent.

The S&P 500 index rose 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,906.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 37 points, or 0.2 percent, to 26,183. The Nasdaq composite gained 9 points, or 0.1 percent, to 8,022.