A big sigh of relief for investors, and two banking giants post earnings. Those stories and more are what's in Friday's Market Minute.
The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) soared 323 points Thursday, the biggest gain this year, on signs the stalemate in Washington may be breaking apart. The Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) jumped 36 and the Nasdaq composite index (^IXIC) rose 82 points.
Earnings season is heating up. JPMorgan Chase (JPM) posted a big quarterly loss due to $9 billion in charges for legal costs and reserves. Without those items, JPMorgan's operating net easily topped Wall Street expectations. Chairman Jamie Dimon says he expects legal costs to remain volatile over the next several quarters, before stabilizing.
Wells Fargo (WFC) says its earnings rose 13 percent on lower expenses, even as its lucrative mortgage business slowed from a year ago. The results beat Wall Street estimates.
And another big bank, SunTrust Banks (STI), is taking charges totaling $1.2 billion to settle legal claims related to mortgage securities.
The supermarket chain Safeway (SWY) easily beat expectations. The company also says it plans to leave the Chicago market, where it operates 72 stores under the Dominick's brand.
Micron Technology's (MU) net fell short of expectations, but the chipmaker issued an upbeat outlook, helped by a recent acquisition.
And the retailer Gap (GPS) posted a 3 percent drop in a key measure of sales last month. Its shares are set to drop.
BP and Toyota Motor both won big victories in court. A jury found BP (BP) was negligent in allowing toxic gas to leak out from a Texas City plant in 2010. But the jury said the plaintiffs in the case weren't due any compensation. They had sought billions of dollars, but BP argued that they didn't suffer serious harm.
And a jury in California found that Toyota (TM) wasn't liable for the death of a woman killed when her Camry crashed after accelerating unexpectedly. The jury said the vehicle's design wasn't at fault. This case is considered a bellwether for other cases of unintended acceleration.
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