Tech Leads Stocks Higher Early

(AP) -- U.S. stocks edged higher in early trading Wednesday, recouping some of the market's losses from a day earlier. Technology and health care companies accounted for much of the gains. Financials stocks declined the most after some big banks reported hefty quarterly losses.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 9 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,785 as of 10:13 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 138 points, or 0.5 percent, to 25,931. The Nasdaq added 25 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,248. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 3 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,576.

TECH RALLY: Technology companies notched solid gains in early trading. Lam Research led all stocks in the S&P 500, climbing $7.72, or 4.1 percent, to $198.11.

HEALTHY MOVES: Health care stocks were headed higher, led by AmerisourceBergen. The stock added $1.54, or 1.5 percent, to $101.09.

DEAL TALK: Juno Therapeutics soared 46.5 percent after the Wall Street Journal reported that biotech drugmaker Celgene might buy it. Juno is one of several companies developing therapies that involve genetically engineering patients' blood cells to fight cancer. Shares in Juno rose $21.21 to $66.81. Celgene fell $1.53, or 1.5 percent, to $103.29.

ROUGH ROAD: Ford Motor slumped 5.3 percent after the automaker gave a disappointing profit forecast for the year because of weaker sales in the U.S., higher commodity costs and its investments in new electric and hybrid cars. The stock was the biggest decliner in the S&P 500, giving up 70 cents to $12.40.

EXECUTIVE SHUFFLE: Dentsply Sirona slid 4.9 percent after the manufacturer of professional dental products named a new CEO, rather than going with interim CEO Mark Thierer. Dentsply shares fell $334 to $62.31.

BANK EARNINGS: Goldman Sachs and Bank of America were down following their latest quarterly results. Goldman said it lost $1.93 billion in the fourth quarter as the bank had to record more than $4 billion in charges related to the new U.S. tax law. Bank of America said its fourth-quarter profits fell by nearly half from a year ago, as the bank had to book $2.9 billion in charges related to the tax law. Goldman shares declined $7.26, or 2.8 percent, to $251.20, while Bank of America lost 52 cents, or 1.7 percent, to $30.72.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude was little changed at $63.72 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 4 cents to $69.18 a barrel.

BOND YIELDS: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 2.55 percent from 2.54 percent late Wednesday.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 110.70 yen from 110.30 yen on Wednesday. The euro fell to $1.2227 from $1.2271.

BITCOIN: The price of bitcoin extended its slide. The digital currency was down 17 percent to $9,425, according to the tracking site CoinDesk. Bitcoin futures on the Cboe Futures Exchange were 14 percent lower at $9,500. The futures allow investors to make bets on the future price of bitcoin. Many finance pros believe bitcoin is in a speculative bubble that could burst any time.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany's DAX lost 0.7 percent, while the CAC 40 in France slipped 0.4 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 declined 0.5 percent. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index lost 0.4 percent, while the Kospi in South Korea shed 0.3 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng rebounded from earlier losses to gain 0.3 percent.

(BE)