Dow Pares Losses as Bank of America Climbs

The Dow pared its losses Friday as Bank of America gained. But techs, energy and commodities retreated as crude oil dropped below $71 a barrel.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 were down modestly, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq was off more than 1 percent.

A computer glitch on the New York Stock Exchange wreaked havoc in the market, halting floor trading on over 200 stocks for more than an hour. Electronic trading, however, continued. Among those big-caps affected were CNBC parent General Electric , Merck and ExxonMobil . Everything seems to be back to normal now.

In the day's economic news: export prices rose 0.6 percent in May, while import prices jumped 1.4 percent, mostly due to a surge in gasoline prices.

Meanwhile, consumer sentiment ticked up to a nine-month high in a mid-June reading but failed to top its September 2008 level. The Reuters/University of Michigan gauge of consumers' mood rose to 69from 68.7 at the end of May. That was just shy of the 69.5 economists had expected.

Crude oil fell more than $1 a barrel, trading below $71 a barrel, after topping $73 in the prior session.

Bank of America shares rose nearly 5 percent after one analyst said the stock could easily triple in the next two years.

"I’ve been following banks for more than 20 years and I’ve never seen a company come out of a recession with so much core earnings power and so much strength,” Anthony Polini, a bank analyst at Raymond James & Associates, said on CNBC Thursday.

Other banks also rebounded, including JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo , despite a mixed bag of news for the sector.

Big financials like JPMorgan, Morgan Stanleyand American Express will start repaying government bailout funds next Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reported, but America/Merrill Lynch slashed its second-quarter earnings estimates on JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley as well as Goldman Sachs .

BlackRock became the world's biggest asset manager after Barclays confirmed Friday it would sell its BGI investment armto the company for $13.5 billion.

AIG late Thursday said it promised to use any funds won at its high-profile trial to repay U.S. taxpayers.

Pharmaceutical stocks advanced after the World Health Organization declared the first flu pandemic in 41 years but stressed that swine flu (the H1N1 virus) has shown no signs of turning more lethal.

Group of Eight (G8) finance ministers will meet in Italy over the weekend.

Better-than-expected Chinese factory output in May and an upwards revision for Japan's industrial output in April gave Asian stocks a boost, while European stocks drifted on Friday.