US STOCKS-Wall St gets boost from financial shares

* Germany’s parliament approves bailout contribution

* Bank shares gain, Goldman climbs on settlement talk

* Dell falls after results

* Indexes up: Dow 0.5 pct, S&P 0.8 pct, Nasdaq 0.7 pct

* For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
(Updates to late afternoon, changes byline)

By Leah Schnurr

NEW YORK, May 21 (BestGrowthStock) – U.S. stocks (Read more about the stock market today. ) rose on Friday,
with bank shares leading a rebound as worries ebbed over the
sovereign debt crisis in Europe and an overhaul of U.S.
financial regulation.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N: ) rose 3.8 percent to $141.24
on rumors of a possible settlement with the Securities and
Exchange Commission of fraud charges, though sources familiar
with the matter said no agreement had been reached. For
details, see [ID:nN21182939].

Bank shares rose a day after the U.S. Senate approved a
sweeping overhaul of regulation of Wall Street firms, capping
months of wrangling over the biggest changes since the 1930s.
[ID:nN20244272]

“There were a lot of concerns about how bad will the reform
be and uncertainty is worse than anything,” said Phil Orlando,
chief equity market strategist at Federated Investors in New
York.

“Now that there is a bill, investors may have gone through
the details and concluded that this is not as deleterious as
the worst case fears.”

The Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI: ) rose 51.92 points,
or 0.52 percent, to 10,119.93. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index
(.SPX: ) gained 8.74 points, or 0.82 percent, to 1,080.33. The
Nasdaq Composite Index (.IXIC: ) put on 15.69 points, or 0.71
percent, to 2,219.70.

Also easing fears over sovereign debt problems in Europe,
Germany’s parliament approved a bill to allow the country to
contribute to rescue aid for Greece and other euro zone nations
burdened with high debt loads.

Early in the session the S&P 500 briefly fell below its
lowest level of the May 6 “flash crash” and has suffered
several days of declines that drove the index down more than 10
percent from an April high.

May equity options and some options on stock indexes will
stop trading at Friday’s close and settle on Saturday, which
may increase volatility. [ID:nN21137375]

JP Morgan Chase & Co (JPM.N: ) advanced 5.1 percent to $39.75
and was the top boost on the Dow, while Bank of America Corp
(BAC.N: ) rose 3.5 percent to $15.82. The S&P financial sector
index (.GSPF: ) rose 2.8 percent.

The Senate bill must now be merged with a measure approved
in December by the U.S. House of Representatives. Top
Democratic lawmakers said they aim to get a bill approved by a
House-Senate conference committee to President Barack Obama to
sign by July 4. [ID:nN21193922].

In earnings news, Dell Inc (DELL.O: ) fell 6.6 percent to
$13.78 a day after posting a stronger-than-expected quarterly
profit but weak gross margins. [ID:nN20149934]

Investors were also tempted back into the market after a
nearly 4 percent sell-off on Thursday left stocks at cheap
valuations.

“There’s a complete disconnect between benign levels of
both interest rates and inflation and the fact that S&P 500
multiples are so low when the economic fundamentals in the U.S.
are still pretty positive,” said Orlando.

At Thursday’s closing level, the S&P 500’s 14-day Relative
Strength Index had fallen below 30 for the first time since the
benchmark hit 12-year lows in March 2009, indicating the index
was oversold.

Stock Market Money

(Editing by Kenneth Barry)

US STOCKS-Wall St gets boost from financial shares