Updated from 2:19 p.m. EDTBank stocks traded mixed Thursday following JPMorgan Chase's ( JPM) better-than-expected earnings report. JPMorgan's first-quarter profit slipped 10% from a year ago, but earnings of $2.14 billion, or 40 cents a share, were better than analyst forecasts. The bank also recorded revenue of $26.9 billion, compared with the Thomson Reuters average estimate of $22.9 billion. It wasn't all good news for JPMorgan. Defaults are still rising -- credit costs amounted to $10.1 billion in the first quarter, up significantly from a year ago. But JPMorgan's investment bank pulled in a record profit of $1.6 billion on record revenue of $8.3 billion. A year earlier, before JPMorgan bought the nearly-collapsed investment bank Bear Stearns, that division posted a loss. JPMorgan shares finished up 2.1% to $33.24. Citigroup ( C), which posts its own earnings report tomorrow, climbed 1%. Bank of America ( BAC), which reports quarterly results Monday, gave back early gains and ended down 1%. Wells Fargo ( WFC) gave back 0.5%. Bank of New York Mellon ( BK) shares were dropping following the announcement by General Growth Properties ( GGP) that it will seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Bank of New York is listed among General Growth Properties' top regular creditors, with unsecured claims of$1.44 billion. Bank of New York fell 4.2% to close at $31.21. Wilmington Trust ( WL), which was listed in the bankruptcy filing as a creditor, said Thursday afternoon that it is not a direct holder of debt issued by any GGP entity. Shares bounced from a low of $10.25 and rose 2.5% to $11.03. Shares of American International Group ( AIG) were trading higher after the insurer said it would unload its auto insurance unit to rival Zurich Financial Services for $1.9 billion.
Separately, AIG said Thursday morning that it has sold AIG Private Bank to Aabar Investments PJSC, an Abu Dhabi-based investment firm. Aabar will pay $253 million for the transaction, and assume about $55 million of loans that other AIG divisions have made to the private bank, which services wealthy clients. AIG climbed 5.6% to $1.69. Among analyst research out Thursday, Sandler O'Neill downgraded both American Express ( AXP) and Capital One ( COF) to sell from hold. The firm said it was downgrading Capital One as the current valuation does not fully reflect worsening fundamentals and credit performance. And while Sandler O'Neill said American Express deserves a premium to banks and card issuing peers based on its business mix and strength of its brand, valuation has gotten ahead of itself. American Express shares, which rallied Wednesday after the company said its net write-off rate for loans fell to 8.6% in March from 8.7% in February, tacked on 0.3% to $20.69. Capital One, which said Wednesday that the annualized net charge-off rate for U.S. credit cards rose to 9.33% in March from 8.06% in February, finished up 3.1% at $17.86 after bouncing from an earlier low of $16.21.