US stocks closed higher, led by gains in banks after JPMorgan Chase turned in results that weren't as bad as analysts anticipated. JPMorgan rose 4% Wednesday. Profits and revenue for the giant bank both fell in the first quarter, but not as much as forecast. Other banks also rose. Bank of America jumped 4% and Wells Fargo climbed 3%. Banks are still the worst-performing sector in the market this year. Investors worry that low interest rates and defaults from energy companies will hurt results at US lenders.
The Dow Jones industrial average increased 187 points, or 1.1%, to 17,908, the AP reports. The Standard & Poor's 500 index added 20 points, or 1%, to 2,082. The Nasdaq composite rose 75 points, or 1.6%, to 4,947.