U.S. stocks opened higher as the Dow Jones industrial average heads higher for the second day in a row. The early gains turned the Dow positive for the year.

Minutes after the opening bell Wednesday, the Dow is up 112 points at 12,242.

Bank of America led the Dow, up 1.6 percent. Only two stocks of the 30 in the Dow dropped: Pfizer Inc. and Johnson & Johnson. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 13 points to 1,298. The Nasdaq composite rose 34 points to 2,812.

Stocks turned higher even as the European Central Bank left its benchmark lending rate unchanged.

Europe's central bank has been urged to cut rates to stimulate a vulnerable economy, but bank President Mario Draghi has said the bank cannot make up for inaction by governments.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)