Bank stocks and the broader markets rose Thursday on better-than-expected unemployment data.

The KBW Bank Index rose 3.41%, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.92% and the Standard & Poor's 500 rose 1.19%.

The Labor Department said Thursday that initial unemployment claims for the week that ended July 25 rose 4.5% from the prior week. However, the total number of unemployed fell 0.8%, to 6.2 million. Economists on average had expected the total to rise to 6.3 million.

Gainers were across the board.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. rose 1.9%, Bank of America Corp., 3.3%, Wells Fargo & Co., 2%, PNC Financial Services Group Inc., 0.9% and U.S. Bancorp, 4.1%.

Among the regionals, SunTrust Banks Inc. rose 7.4%, BB&T Corp., 2.7%, Capital One Financial Corp., 2.4%, Fifth Third Bancorp, 5.6%, Comerica Inc., 4% and Zions Bancorp., 7.3%.

Citigroup Inc. fell 8 cents, to $3.14.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.