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Midday Friday: Banks continue dip as consumer sentiment rises

U.S. bank and thrift stocks, along with broader markets, continued to dip during morning trading Friday, Dec. 23.

The SNL U.S. Bank Index was down 0.07% to 538.20 and the SNL U.S. Thrift Index decreased 0.13% to 966.27.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average retreated 0.02% to 19,914.32, the S&P 500 dipped 0.01% to 2,260.70 and the Nasdaq composite index slid 0.03% to 5,445.94.

Among the nation's biggest banks, JPMorgan Chase & Co. was down 0.47% to $86.48, Wells Fargo & Co. slipped 0.05% to $55.72 and Bank of America Corp. ticked down 0.04% to $22.53, while Citigroup Inc. gained 0.35% to $60.70.

Among notable movers, Aurora, Ill.-based Old Second Bancorp Inc. increased 2.73% to $11.30; Los Angeles-based Preferred Bank gained 2.36% to $52.00; and Renton, Wash.-based First Financial Northwest Inc. rose 1.91% to $19.20; while Mount Laurel, N.J.-based Marlin Business Services Corp. fell 3.41% to $21.25.

In the thrift sector, Westbury, N.Y.-based New York Community Bancorp Inc. ticked down 0.13% to $15.89; Lake Success, N.Y.-based Astoria Financial Corp. ticked down 0.11% to $18.69; and San Diego-based BofI Holding Inc. climbed 2.41% to $28.76.

In domestic economic news, sales of new single-family houses in the U.S. rose 5.2% month over month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 592,000 in November, compared to a revised October rate of 563,000, the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development reported.

The final December reading of the University of Michigan consumer sentiment index was 98.2, up approximately 4.7% from 93.8 in November.

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