Early this morning, it looked as though Dow 13,000 might be a thing of the past, as the stock market fell sharply after a troubling meeting of international financial leaders in Mexico City that highlighted the continuing challenges of the European sovereign-debt crisis. But the market rebounded after solid pending home-sales data combined with a drop in oil prices helped support stocks. Nevertheless, the Dow Jones Industrials
Let's take a look at some of the stocks that did their best to push the Dow higher today.
Good economic news has been a big positive for bank stocks lately. But part of what's moving JPMorgan today is actually criticism of the Wall Street bank.
An analyst note last week suggested that JPMorgan would be worth more to investors if the bank broke up -- as much as a third more. By selling its asset-management business, the analyst argued, the company could use freed-up cash to fund share repurchases that would raise the share price. That may be true, but I wouldn't expect CEO Jamie Dimon to be in a hurry to make such a huge strategic shift.
Bank of America
Like JPMorgan, B of A has its finger on the pulse of the U.S. economy. But the company also had company-specific news of its own.
A federal appeals court chose to send a proposed mortgage-bond settlement between B of A and bond trustee Bank of New York Mellon
Card giant AmEx has long stood out from the crowd with its charge cards. But in its annual report filing with the SEC Friday, AmEx said that federal and state regulators are likely to look at its cards to see whether its late-fee policies are consistent with consumer-protection laws.
The filing said that the FDIC has been working with the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Although some AmEx cards don't allow customers to carry a balance, others do -- and because those are issued by Centurion Bank, the FDIC and state regulators have authority to look into the matter. Any refunds or fines aren't likely to be significant, but a bad result could weigh on AmEx's reputation going forward.
You can find great investments even among stocks that aren't in the Dow. We have one stock we're especially excited about, as the Fool's chief investment officer picked it to crush the market. To learn more about it, check out this free report: "The Motley Fool's Top Stock for 2012." Instant access is just a click away.
Fool contributor Dan Caplinger doesn't own shares of the companies mentioned. You can follow him on Twitter. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended writing a covered strangle position in American Express. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Fool has a disclosure policy.