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U.S. stocks swung between gains and losses as better-than-forecast earnings offset disappointing economic data and concern over Europe’s debt crisis.
The S&P 500 fell earlier after reports showed sales of previously owned U.S. homes in March unexpectedly fell, while more Americans than forecast filed applications for unemployment benefits last week. Another report showed manufacturing in the Philadelphia region expanded at a slower pace in April as orders and sales cooled.
Global equities also fell as yields on French and Spanish 10-year bonds climbed at least six basis points, reviving concern about the sovereign debt crisis. Spain sold 2.54 billion euros ($3.3 billion) of two-year and 10-year debt today, compared with a maximum target of 2.5 billion euros. France auctioned 8 billion euros.
Dow 12,977.65 -55.10 -0.42%, Nasdaq 3,019.59 -11.86 -0.39%, S&P 500 1,379.70 -5.44 -0.39%
Bank of America (ВАС) rose 0.4 percent to $8.96. The second- largest U.S. lender said first-quarter profit rose amid a rebound in trading and better credit quality. Profit excluding certain one-time items increased about 40 percent to $3.7 billion, or 31 cents a diluted share, from $2.6 billion, or 23 cents, a year earlier. That beat the average per-share estimate of 27 analysts.
Morgan Stanley climbed 1.9 percent to $18. Stock- and bond- trading revenue rose more than at any other major U.S. bank. Profit was 71 cents a share excluding accounting charges, topping the 44-cent average estimate of 17 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. The KBW Bank Index advanced 0.1 percent.
Travelers (TRV) added 4.8 percent to $62.34. First-quarter operating profit, which excludes some investment results, was $2.01 a share. That compares with the $1.52 average estimate of 22 analysts.
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