Dow Jones climbs 533 points as big bank earnings beat

Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley and Citigroup all reported strong results

U.S. stock indexes surged Thursday as the big banks posted strong quarterly results and jobless claims fell to lowest level of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 533 points, or 1.55%, while the S&P 500 index advanced 1.71% to post its best day since March and the Nasdaq Composite index tacked on 1.73% for its best session since May.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 35756.88 +15.73 +0.04%
SP500 S&P 500 4574.79 +8.31 +0.18%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 15235.714526 +9.01 +0.06%

The strong gains came as jobless claims fell to the lowest level since the outbreak of COVID-19. A separate release showed producer prices rose 8.6% year over year in September, making for the sixth straight record increase. Prices edged up 0.5% month over month. 

In stocks, Bank of America Corp. reported earnings and revenue that exceeded Wall Street estimates amid strong growth in its lending and stock-trading units. The bank also benefited from the release of $1.1 billion in reserves that were built up during the pandemic. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
BAC BANK OF AMERICA CORP. 47.96 +0.45 +0.95%

Wells Fargo & Co.’s quarterly profit spiked 59%, boosted by the release of money set aside for losses during the pandemic. Both earnings and sales topped analysts’ expectations. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WFC WELLS FARGO & CO. 50.63 +0.01 +0.02%

Morgan Stanley booked stronger-than-expected results as its wealth management division added a record amount of assets. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
MS MORGAN STANLEY 103.47 +1.56 +1.53%

Citigroup Inc. earnings and sales outpaced estimates as the release of loan loss reserves and strong equities trading provided a lift.  

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
C CITIGROUP, INC. 70.65 -0.18 -0.25%

Elsewhere on the earnings front, Domino’s Pizza Inc. reported an unexpected drop in U.S. same-store sales.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
DPZ DOMINO'S PIZZA, INC. 465.78 -0.46 -0.10%

UnitedHealth Group Inc. raised its full-year profit outlook due to robust membership growth in its insurance business from both commercial and Medicare and Medicaid plans. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
UNH UNITEDHEALTH GROUP, INC. 454.64 +5.15 +1.15%

Meanwhile, oil companies, including Chevron Corp., ExxonMobil Corp. and Haliburton Co., gained as West Texas Intermediate crude oil climbed 87 cents to $81.31 a barrel. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
CVX CHEVRON CORP. 114.10 +0.25 +0.22%
XOM EXXON MOBIL CORP. 65.84 +1.49 +2.32%
HAL HALLIBURTON CO. 26.16 -0.06 -0.23%

Miners, like Barrick Gold Corp. and Newmont Corp., added to Wednesday’s gains as gold rallied $3 to $1,796.70 an ounce.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
GOLD BARRICK GOLD CORP. 19.43 -0.12 -0.61%
NEM NEWMONT CORP. 57.70 -0.21 -0.36%

In other news, Deere & Co. shares were in focus as more than 10,000 workers across 14 U.S. facilities went on strike over wages and benefits.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
DE DEERE & CO. 341.15 -11.57 -3.28%

Electric truck startup Lordstown Motors Corp. named Adam Kroll, a former investment banker who recently served as chief administrative officer at hydrogen-powered commercial vehicle maker Hyzon Motors, as its new finance chief.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
RIDE LORDSTOWN MOTORS 5.01 -0.01 -0.20%

Overseas markets mostly gained. 

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European bourses were broadly higher with Britain’s FTSE 100 up 0.92%, Germany’s DAX advancing 1.4% and France’s CAC 40 rising 1.33%. 

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 surged 1.46% while China’s Shanghai Composite index slipped 0.1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index remained closed for holiday.