Major Banks Fare Better than Most

Bank stocks lost ground again on Tuesday, but in a reversal from recent sessions, the major banks held up better than the market at large.

"Banks didn't seem to be doing too badly" relative to the Dow Jones industrial average's fall of 75 points, or 3%, by early afternoon, said Ronald I. Mandle of Sanford C. Bernstein & Sons.

By 4 p.m., the Dow had recovered to 2,931, off 41.

J.P. Morgan & Co. was off $1, to $61.875; BankAmerica Corp. off $1, to $35.875; Bankers Trust New York Corp. dropped $1.875, to $62; NCNB fell $1.50, to $35.75; Wachovia Corp. fell $1.375, to $52.875; and PNC Financial lost $1.125, to $43.125.

First Chicago Corp. lost only 25 cents, to $24.75, despite a 10-Q disclosure that it expects to experience additional loan problems as a result of the faltering economy.

The market trend was apparently enough to offset announcements by Northern Trust Co. and CoreStates Financial Corp. that they would boost dividends. Northern Trust lost $1, to $46. CoreStates was unchanged at $45.

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