Bear Stearns Cos. and Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette Inc. reported big earnings gains Wednesday, joining a procession of banks trumpeting healthy returns this week in investment banking and market-related activities.

Bear Stearns reported a 105% increase in earnings per share for the second quarter, which ended Dec. 31, to $1.64. Record-level underwriting and strong equity markets contributed to the gain. DLJ reported earnings per share of $1.35 in the fourth quarter, up 187% over the year-earlier period.

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