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As the saying goes, sometimes you're the windshield, and sometimes you're the bug. Bank of America (NYSE: BAC ) has certainly had lots of experience being the latter in the past, but not this week. Today, the big guy's upward trajectory continues, even as mid-day numbers show the Dow (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) and the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) down in the dumps.
While it's always great news to see B of A on the upswing, it's good to take a look at what may be influencing the rally as well. Thinking about what has been going on over the past couple of days brings to mind some news that might be lifting the bank's stock for yet another day.
Mortgage news, in the news
President Obama's State of the Union address might have helped B of A and peers Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC ) and JPMorgan Chase. Obama not-so-subtly put pressure on Congress to allow even more homeowners to refinance their troubled Fannie- and Freddie-backed home loans, and also threw in a suggestion that those without that backing should be allowed more leeway, too. Since Wells and JPMorgan have been going great guns in the mortgage refinancing biz lately -- and Bank of America has loudly proclaimed its intent to do so, too -- this might be giving banking stocks a little nudge.
Indeed, JPMorgan is flying high today too -- but not Wells. Perhaps this is because Wells' CFO stated publicly yesterday that mortgage lending is slowing. Since Wells originates one-third of home loans these days, it's a good bet that this announcement is cramping the stock's style.
A couple of nice words for B of A this week, too
Bank of America got a couple of nods for other things in addition to the mortgage news. The bank's Bank of America Merrill Lynch unit was recognized for the third year in a row by Global Finance magazine for being the best in the Cash Management business for all of North America. On the customer relations front, which the bank concedes needs much work, the Harris Poll Reputation Quotient showed that the bank made definite strides in that arena over the past year. Although still near the bottom of the barrel, the bank registered a sizable reputation rebound -- and that is definitely worth noting.
As Foolish, long-term investors, we of course need to keep the one-day jumps and jives of a stock in perspective. Even stocks have good days and bad days, so it's important to realize that sometimes they're often simply squiggles that we can safely ignore.
As B of A continues to buzz along, investors need to keep up with all the issues that may be affecting the big bank's bottom line. To learn more about the most talked-about bank out there, check out our in-depth company report on Bank of America. The report details Bank of America's prospects, including three reasons to buy and three reasons to sell. Just click here to get access.