U.S. stocks are climbing Wednesday afternoon. Banks are making the biggest gains after JPMorgan Chase posted quarterly results that weren’t as bad as analysts anticipated. Stocks in Europe and Asia jumped after China said exports rose for the first time in nine months.
KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 135 points, or 0.8 percent, to 17,856 as of 12:19 p.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 13 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,074. The Nasdaq composite index advanced 50 points, or 1 percent, to 4,921.
BANK ON IT: JPMorgan, the largest bank in the U.S., said its first-quarter profit fell because of weak results in its investment banking business. Its profit and revenue were bigger than analysts expected, however, and the stock rose $2.57, or 4.3 percent, to $61.85.
Several other major banks will report earnings this week. Bank of America picked up 52 cents, or 3.9 percent, to $13.79 and Wells Fargo rose $1.13, or 2.4 percent, to $48.90 while Citigroup jumped $2.17, or 5.2 percent, to $44.07. Morgan Stanley gained $1.07, or 4.3 percent, to $25.65.
RIDE THE RAILS: Railroad operator CSX gained $1.02, or 4.1 percent, to $26.01. The company’s profit fell as demand for coal got weaker and CSX hauled less freight, but expenses fell, partly because fuel costs dropped.
TITANIC: Agriculture and construction equipment company Titan Machinery said it took a smaller loss than investors expected. Its stock added 35 cents, or 3 percent, to reach $11.85.
RETAIL SALES: Consumer goods companies fell after the Commerce Department said retail sales fell a bit in March. Americans have been cautious about their spending this year even though gas prices are low and jobs are growing. Tobacco company Reynolds American decreased $1.63, or 3.2 percent, to $49.63 and Altria fell $1.70, or 2.7 percent, to $62.12.
Tyson Foods gave up $2.13, or 3.1 percent, to get to $66.24 and Clorox declined $2.20, or 1.7 percent, to $125.97. Spam maker Hormel decreased 68 cents, or 1.7 percent, to $40 and Campbell Soup shed 96 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $63.02.
HIT THE GAS: The report showed that spending on autos decreased, but auto suppliers traded higher as investors continued to expect sales growth. BorgWarner jumped $1.74, or 5 percent, to $36.67 and navigation device maker Garmin rose $1.81, or 4.5 percent, to $42.23.
Delphi Automotive rose $3.19, or 4.4 percent, to $75.54. Two years ago the IRS argued that some of Delphi’s businesses were based in the U.S. and should be taxed accordingly. Delphi said Wednesday that the agency agrees that’s not the case.
STRIKE: Verizon Communications slipped after around 39,000 landline and cable workers walked off the job Wednesday morning. Verizon’s contracts with its unions expired about eight months ago and little progress has been made in negotiations. The stock declined 74 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $51.21.
MORE COAL DAMAGE: Peabody Energy, the largest coal company in the U.S, filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Several other coal companies have gone bankrupt recently as environmental, technological and economic changes ripple through the industry. Arch Coal, the second-largest coal miner in the country, filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year.
MEDIVATION MOVES: Cancer drug maker Medivation jumped $3.83, or 8.2 percent, to $49.56 on reports that French drugmaker Sanofi offered to buy the company.
NO DEAL: Spice and herb seller McCormick is giving up on an effort to buy Premier Foods of Britain. McCormick offered to buy the company last month for $764 million, and McCormick stock declined $1.57, or 1.6 percent, to $97.33.
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude inched up 2 cents to $42.19 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, fell 8 cents to $44.61 a barrel in London. The price of oil jumped more than 4 percent Tuesday to reach its highest levels of 2016.
OVERSEAS: France’s CAC 40 rose 3.3 percent and while Germany’s DAX added 2.7 percent. The FTSE 100 in Britain rose 1.9 percent. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 added 2.8 percent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 3.2 percent. Exports from China rose 11.5 percent in March compared with a year earlier, the first annual gain since June.
BONDS, CURRENCIES: Bond prices were little changed and the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note held steady at 1.78 percent. The dollar rose to 109.17 yen from 108.53 yen and the euro fell to $1.1282 from $1.1397.