BB&T: Financial Winner
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- BB&T (BBT) was the winner among the largest U.S. banks on a weak Tuesday for the financial sector, with shares rising over 1% to close at $31.69.
The Federal Reserve released the minutes of its March 13 Open Market Committee meeting, and although the committee "revised up its forecast for inflation a bit compared with the projection prepared for the January FOMC meeting, reflecting recent data indicating higher paths for the prices of oil, other commodities, and imports," it said that the Fed's "staff continued to project that inflation would be subdued in 2012 and 2013."
The Federal Open Market Committee didn't change its language about the Fed's "highly accommodative stance for monetary policy," and expectations that economic conditions were "likely to warrant exceptionally low levels for the federal funds rate at least through late 2014."
The Fed also seemed to downplay the prospects of another round of quantitative easing saying that only "a couple" of members would support additional stimulus under certain conditions.
The Commerce Department reported that during February, new orders for manufactured goods increased 1.3% from January, just behind the consensus estimate of a 1.4% increase, according to Briefing.com. The Commerce Department also said that factory shipments had increased for nine straight months, and were up 0.1% during February, to $462.6 billion.
The KBW Bank Index (I:BKX) was down slightly, to close at 49.90
BB&T's shares have now returned 27% year-to-date, following an 11% decline during 2011.