Stocks edged higher at the open on Thursday after Bank of America and Morgan Stanley reported earnings and as strong demand at European bond auctions lessened euro zone debt concerns.

Bank of America Corp climbed 6.9 percent to $7.28 after it reported a fourth-quarter profit, reversing a year-earlier loss, boosted by one-time items and lower expenses for bad loans.

Fellow financial Morgan Stanley jumped 6.3 percent to $18.46 after it posted a quarterly loss but still managed to top analysts' expectations.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 16.50 points, or 0.13 percent, at 12,595.45. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 4.07 points, or 0.31 percent, at 1,312.11. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> added 11.81 points, or 0.43 percent, at 2,781.52.

(Reporting By Ryan Vlastelica; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)