Bank of America Corp. (BAC) Recap: Stock Surges 7.5% in Turnaround Week

Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) delivered a strong performance to shareholders in the recent trading week, rising 55 cents. A lift to the banks and the financial sector has provided for a relief rally to the overall U.S. markets.

On Monday, the Obama administration said it was extending its foreclosure-prevention program and expanding incentives to lenders to reduce principal amounts on at risk mortgages, the Washington Post reported.

On Tuesday, Bank of America named Christian Meissner as head of its investment banking unit, ending a leadership structure with three heads of global corporate and investment banking, reported the Wall Street Journal. Also, Goldman downgraded Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) given higher execution risk and valuation, and cited relative returns vs. Citigroup (NYSE:C), which was upgraded to Buy from Neutral. Bank of America price target remains $8. In an effort to grow further, Bank of America announced it is hiring over 50 small business brokers in New England.  The additions are part of the company’s previously announced plan to hire 1,000 small business bankers across the nation by mid-2012.

On Thursday, Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) is set to participate in the Bloomberg China Conference looks at China’s economy, the moves the government is taking to manage the challenges of rapid economic growth, inflation, real estate market, environmental concerns, consumer spending and commodities markets on the mainland. The Conference is being held in New York on February 1.

On Friday, Bank of America Corp. won dismissal from Allstate Corp.’s (NYSE:ALL) lawsuit over the insurer’s alleged losses from $700M in mortgage-backed securities purchased from Countrywide Financial Corp., reported Bloomberg Businessweek. As a corporate parent, the bank isn’t responsible for the liabilities of Countrywide, acquired in 2008, said U.S. District Judge Mariana Pfaelzer in Los Angeles. Also, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman filed a lawsuit against several of the nation’s largest banks charging that the creation and use of a private national mortgage electronic registry system known as MERS has resulted in a wide range of deceptive and fraudulent foreclosure filings in New York state and federal courts, harming homeowners and undermining the integrity of the judicial foreclosure process. Lastly, Barbara Desoer, the head of Bank of America’s (NYSE:BAC) home loans division, is retiring, according to The New York Times, and the company said it is not appointing a replacement.

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To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

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