Stocks jumped Friday, Jan. 12, and the three major equity indexes finished at records as big U.S. banks kicked off the fourth-quarter earnings season.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 228 points or 0.89%. The S&P 500 rose 0.67% and the Nasdaq gained 0.68%.

Leading the Dow higher were Travelers Cos. (TRV) - Get Report , up 1.7%, Merck & Co. (MRK) - Get Report  , which gained 1.8%, and Boeing Co. (BA) - Get Report  , up 2.5%.

JPMorgan & Chase Co. (JPM) - Get Report , America's biggest bank, said fourth-quarter profit fell 37% to $4.23 billion but adjusted earnings per share of $1.76 topped analysts' forecasts of $1.69. The stock rose 1.6%.

Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC) - Get Report , the U.S. lender under fire from regulators and customers over abusive sales practices, posted its biggest quarterly profit increase in four years after taking a $3.35 billion gain related to passage of the U.S. tax law in December. Shares fell 0.73%.

BlackRock Inc. (BLK) - Get Report said fourth-quarter profit more than doubled, as the largest U.S. money manager benefited from runaway investor demand for its iShares exchange-traded funds and a $1.2 billion net gain due to the U.S. tax law passed in December. The stock rose 3.2%.

Facebook Inc. (FB) - Get Report  fell 4.5% after the social media giant said it would re-tool its news feed to direct more content from the families and friends of its 2 billion monthly active users.

JPMorgan Chase and Facebook are holdings in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS Charitable Trust Portfolio. Want to be alerted before Cramer buys or sells the stocks? Learn more now.

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Shares of Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) - Get Report tumbled nearly 1% after the chipmaker said its microprocessors were susceptible to both variants of the Spectre security flaw. AMD said several days ago there was a "near zero risk" that its chips were susceptible to the security flaw.

In U.S. economic news, the consumer price index in December rose 0.1%, meeting economists' estimates. Retail sales in December rose 0.4%.

U.S. oil prices turned higher Friday, rising 0.49% to $64.11 a barrel.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 benchmark, the region's broadest measure of share prices, rose 0.31%, while Asian stocks ended Friday's session mostly higher.

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