Banks Settle Lawsuits, Market Advance

The markets traded higher during the midday with the Dow adding 2 points to 14,976 as Bank of America and UBS both settled lawsuits with bond insurers. Nasdaq gained 12 points to 3391.

On the upside

Dow Jones reported that Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) will settle a lawsuit filed by MBIA (NYSE: MBI) by paying the bond insurer $1.6 billion in cash. The news lifted shares of fellow mortgage insurer MGIC Investment (NYSE: MTG).

Assured Guaranty (NYSE: AGO) announced that UBS will pay the bond insurer $358 million to settle its breach of contract lawsuit.

Penn West (NYSE: PWE) named Rick George to the position of Chairman of the Board and Allan Markin as Vice Chairman.

On the downside

Shares of Ultra Petroleum (NYSE: UPL) continued falling after reporting sharply lower first quarter earnings on Friday.

TheStreet suggested that Aveo Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: AVEO) chief executive Tuan Ha-Ngoc should be fired for incompetence.

A Seeking Alpha contributor wrote that Halcon Resources (NYSE: HK) was over valued.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by 7 to 5 on Nasdaq. The broader S&P 500 index rose 3 points to 1617.

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