Stocks head higher for a second day on Wall Street, easing a January funk; BofA jumps

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Stocks are moving higher in midday trading, helping the market erase a January slump.

Bank of America led other banking stocks higher after reporting that loans on its balance sheet continued to improve in the fourth quarter. Technology stocks also rose. Apple and Microsoft gained 2 per cent.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 120 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 16,494 in midday trading Wednesday.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose nine points, or 0.5 per cent, to 1,848, a fraction of a point below its record high close on Dec. 31. The gain nearly wiped out the S&P 500’s loss for the year.

The Nasdaq rose 26 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 4,209.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.90 per cent.