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Thursday's Bank Stocks: Economic reports provide setup for July jobs number

A slew of economic and business reports released Thursday, Aug. 3, set investors up nicely for the release of the July jobs numbers Aug. 4.

The SNL U.S. Bank Index dropped 0.75% to 552.99, and the SNL U.S. Thrift Index lost 0.87% to 900.10. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.04% to 22,026.10, while the S&P 500 slipped 0.22% to 2,472.16 and the Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.35% to 6,340.34.

Tech stocks were the major movers of domestic markets Thursday, but a slew of economic and business reports set investors up for the July jobs number, to be released Aug. 4. Jobless claims decreased by 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 240,000 for the week ended July 29 compared to the prior week, according to an Aug. 3 release from the U.S. Labor Department. And factory goods orders in June grew 3.0% to $481.1 billion from May, according to an Aug. 3 release from the Census Bureau. U.S. business activity in July grew at its fastest pace since January, IHS Markit reported Aug. 3, as its U.S. composite PMI output index rose to 54.6 from 53.9. The services business activity index went up to 54.7 from 54.2, the biggest expansion in six months.

In banking, quarterly earnings continued for community banks, while regulators made moves that could have implications for operations at the largest banks.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency filed a motion to dismiss the Conference of State Bank Supervisors' attempt to prevent the regulator from issuing special-purpose national bank charters to financial technology companies, calling it "a fatally premature" attempt to "remedy a speculative harm."

The Federal Reserve Board put forward two proposals Aug. 3 — one covering its supervisory expectations for the directors of large financial institutions and the other covering the Fed's rating system for these companies. The first would help the Fed refocus its expectations for the board of directors of large financial institutions. The Fed would look for a board that focuses on "core responsibilities" that promote the "safety and soundness" of a firm. The Fed added that the proposal would help reduce burden on the boards of smaller institutions. The second proposal seeks to better connect the Fed's rating system for big banks with their postcrisis supervisory program. The proposal would only apply to banks with $50 billion or more in total assets.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. shrank 0.66% to $92.50. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a consent order and civil money penalty of $4.6 million against unit JPMorgan Chase Bank NA on Aug. 2, in connection with its credit reporting activities for consumer deposit accounts. The CFPB claimed the unit failed to establish or implement appropriate procedures to ensure the accuracy of the data it gives to nationwide specialty consumer reporting agencies.

Citigroup Inc.'s stock declined 1.86% to $68.13; Bank of America Corp. lost 0.89% to $24.37 and Wells Fargo & Co. dropped 0.41% to $53.40.

Regions Financial Corp. expanded 0.47% to $14.90, Access National Corp. improved 2.03% to $26.62 and Camden National Corp. increased 0.92% to $41.57. Southside Bancshares Inc. fell 2.57% to $34.15, BancFirst Corp. declined 2.43% to $52.20 and Banc of California Inc. slipped 2.17% to $20.25.

In thrifts, Meta Financial Group Inc. grew 3.92% to $74.30 and Prudential Bancorp Inc. added 2.86% to $18.01. Beneficial Bancorp Inc. shrank 2.86% to $15.30 and TrustCo Bank Corp NY dropped 2.44% to $8.00.

Market prices and index values are current as of the time of publication and are subject to change.