U.S. stock futures jumped higher at Thursday's start, with investors cheered after Wells Fargo surprise forecast of a record $3 billion profit for the first quarter. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 113 points to 7,961. The S&P 500 Index gained 17 points to 842. The Nasdaq Composite rose 27 points to 1,618. Wells Fargo is up 27% leading the charge in the financials. Franklin Resources is up 3% on an upgrade. Morgan Stanley is up 5% even though the Wallstreet Journal expects the company to loss money this quarter. The techs are performing well. Apple is up 2% on an upgrade. Research in Motion continues its rally following strong earnings last week. Textron is up 42% on rumors of a buyout offer as high as $21 a share. Everything looks great except for a few retailers posting bad March sales. Walmart is down 4.5% after indicating they may miss first quarter estimates. Costco is down 3% because March same store sales fell 5%. Bed Bath & Beyond is lower following a downgrade. Movado is down 10% after missing estimates by 40 cents. Saks is up 5% even though March same store sales fell 23%. JCPenney is up 7% even though they had to lower estimates. American Eagle is up 8% after indicating earnings should be in line. Gymboree is jumping 24% after raising guidance. Go figure. After the first half an hour, the Dow jumped as much as 200 points, back above 8000. The Nasdaq rose 50 points. So far so go. Through the morning and into the afternoon, the averages remained strong, trading not far from the highs of the day. The financials look great. Through the afternoon, more of the same, with the financials and major averages rallying into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 246 points, or 3.1%, at 8,083., up 0.8% for the week. The S&P 500 added 31 points, or 3.8%, to end at 856, a 1.7% rise from last Friday's close. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 61 points, or 3.9%, to 1,652, for a weekly rise of 1.9%.
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