For investors focused on lucky numbers, it may be notable that the Dow Jones Industrial Average
By the time the dust had settled on Friday, the Dow had tacked on 2.4%, while the broader Russell 3000 climbed 2.3%.
Top 3 Performing Sectors
Russell 3000 Sector
Weekly Price Change
Month-to-Date Price Change
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Weekly price change is March 9-March 16. Monthly price change is Feb. 29-March 16.
If the banking sector is truly making a turn for the better, we could soon be seeing more like Pacific Capital Bancorp's huge surge over the past week. On Monday, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial subsidiary UnionBanCal announced plans to buy Pacific Capital. The proposed acquisition gave Pacific Capital a sizeable premium over its recent trading price, and the deal was given the nod by the Ford Financial Fund, which owns roughly 75% of Pacific Capital.
Meanwhile, oil-tanker owner Frontline
Frontline's shares were up a massive 45% on the week, while Teekay's stock tacked on 16%.
Top 3 Performing Russell 3000 Companies
Weekly Price Change
|Pacific Capital Bancorp||58.2%|
|Overseas Shipholding Group||49.8%|
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Weekly price change is March 9-March 16. Includes only companies with a market cap of $250 million or higher.
Joining in on the big gains during the week were Bank of America
Zoll shares jumped 23% for the week after the joint announcement that the medical-device maker agreed to be acquired by Japan's Asahi Kasei. The deal values Zoll at $2.2 billion, or $93 per share. That takeout price was a 24% premium to the previous trading day's closing price. By week's end, investors had pushed Zoll's stock price to within 0.3% of the buyout price, signaling confidence that the deal will go through without a hitch.
B of A, meanwhile, managed an impressive 22% gain for the week thanks to the Fed's stress tests. In short, the Fed assumed a dour scenario -- 13% unemployment, a 50% decline in stocks, and a 21% drop in housing prices -- and looked at how that would affect the capital positions of 19 of the country's large financial institutions. Bank of America, which investors have been continually wary of since the financial meltdown, got a thumbs-up from the Fed's test, which sparked the week's big gains.
That's it for this week's top-performers recap. If you're looking for some ideas for strong outperformers for the rest of year, The Motley Fool has created a brand new free report titled "The Motley Fool's Top Stock for 2012." In it, my fellow Fools reveal a top pick that's poised for explosive growth ahead. Get instant access -- it's free.
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