Bank of America and Wells Fargo Highlight First Week of Earnings Season

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Just like a Chipotle burrito overflowing with extra guac, everyone loves a three-day weekend -- especially Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  )  reached record highs last week but fell Friday heading into the MLK holiday as big banks got the fourth-quarter earnings season rolling.

1. Banks with good earnings ...
Bank of America
's  (NYSE: BAC  ) earnings were up a handsome 800% from last year, now that the company didn't have to deal with any huge lawsuits in 2013 (unlike painful 2012). Wells Fargo enjoyed a personal record of $5.6 billion in earnings as it grows its mortgage biz with the improving housing market. And Morgan Stanley's (NYSE: MS  ) profits fell from last year, but its report topped expectations and MS execs announced that they could be raising their dividend this year, (Fun!)

2. ... And banks with bad earnings
JPMorgan Chase
's (NYSE: JPM  )  $5.3 billion in earnings were down a bit from last year and just missed analysts' expectations thanks to that pesky recent $2.6 billion Bernie Madoff fine. And Goldman Sachs' $2.3 billion earnings were an un-shiny 19% drop from last year's thanks to a slowdown in its core bond-trading business.
 
3. A big week for Google and Jim Beam acquisitions
Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL  ) dropped a cool $3.2 billion to buy digital thermostat creator Nest in its quest to eventually control your entire home. Beam, meanwhile, is (literally) turning Japanese after it was bought by Osaka-based Suntory Distillery for a tasty $13.6 billion. 

4. Lululemon and J.C. Penney's scary earnings warnings
Two companies that had a worse 2013 than the New York Knicks have started 2014 with some more unfortunate news. J.C. Penney and lululemon athletica both took the time last week to warn investors that their upcoming earnings reports aren't going to look good thanks to some mediocre holiday sales for each.

5. And the World Bank is pumped for 2014
The Washington-based lender to Planet Earth's emerging-market governments has stars in its eyes -- that's because the World Bank raised its forecast for global economic growth this year from 3% to 3.2%. The European debt crisis is fading into the Spanish Riviera sunset, and developed countries with recovering economies from the '08 financial crisis continue to increase trade with developing ones.

What MarketSnacks is checking out this week:
  • Tuesday -- earnings: Delta Airlines, Halliburton
  • Wednesday -- earnings: Coach, eBay
  • Thursday -- weekly jobless claims, earnings: McDonald's, Starbucks
  • Friday -- earnings: Samsung, Kia
 

As originally published on MarketSnacks.com

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