Stocks rise in early trading on Wall Street

NEW YORK - Stocks are rising Wednesday on optimism over bank earnings after Bank of America reported profit surged to $3.44 billion in the fourth quarter. Technology stocks are also climbing fast, with Apple up 2 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average is up 86 points, or 0.5 percent, to 16,459 in the first 45 minutes of trading. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained eight points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,847. The Nasdaq composite rose 27 points, or 0.7 percent, to 4,210.

Bank of America climbed 4 percent after reporting that loans on its balance sheet continue to improve. The bank's provision for credit losses fell to $336 million, from $2.2 billion in the same period a year earlier. Even its mortgage division, which took huge losses after the housing bubble popped, improved.

Technology stocks were among the early gainers. Apple rose 2 percent and Microsoft rose 1.6 percent.

Shares of 3-D printer company ExOne fell $5.25, or 8 percent, to $57.01 after cutting its revenue forecast for the year. The North Huntington, Pennsylvania, company cited deferred orders from international customers.

U.S. wholesale prices increased in December, pushed up by rising price for gasoline prices and other energy costs. Overall inflation remained mild. The Labor Department says the producer price index, which measures costs before they reach the consumer, rose 0.4 percent last month.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.91 percent from 2.87 percent on Tuesday. The price of oil climbed 75 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $93.36 a barrel. Gold fell $9.10, or 0.7 percent, to $1,236.50 an ounce.

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