Bank stocks and the broader markets rose Wednesday as the Federal Reserve said that the recession appears to be over.
The KBW Bank Index rose 1.38%, the Dow Jones industrial average 0.53% and the Standard & Poor's 500 index 0.78%.
The Fed's Beige Book said that all but one of the central bank's 12 regions reported economic activity was "stable," showed "signs of stabilization" or had "firmed." The St. Louis region said the pace of decline in economic activity appeared to be "moderating."
"Most districts noted that the outlook for economic activity among their business contacts remained cautiously positive," the report said.
Gainers went across the board.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. rose 0.8%; Bank of America Corp., 0.1%; Wells Fargo & Co., 2.6%; PNC Financial Services Group Inc., 2.6%, and U.S. Bancorp, 3.6%.
However, Citigroup Inc., fell 2 cents a share, to $4.66.
Among the regional banking companies, SunTrust Banks Inc. rose 2.3%; BB&T Corp., 1.8%; Capital One Financial Corp., 5.7%; Comerica Inc., 3.4%; Fifth Third Bancorp, 0.2%, and Zions Bancorp., 0.7%.
Huntington Bancshares Inc.'s shares remained unchanged from Tuesday's close of $4.07. The Columbus, Ohio, company said Wednesday that it plans to raise up to $150 million to help repay the capital it received from the government's Troubled Asset Relief Program. It also might use the proceeds to repurchase debt.