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Bank of America has reported a $2bn (�1.2bn) profit for the three months to the end of 2011, compared with a $1.2bn loss in the same period in 2010.

It signals continued recovery for the US' second biggest lender.

For the full year, the company reported net profits of $1.4bn compared with a net loss of $2.2bn in 2010.

Meanwhile Morgan Stanley, the world's largest broker, reported a fourth-quarter loss of $250m compared with a profit of $836m a year earlier.

Despite the loss, the results at Morgan Stanley beat analysts' expectations since it was able to increase its share of the equity trading market in the period.

For the full year, Morgan Stanley said its net revenues were $32.4bn compared with $31.4bn in 2010.

Recent results from American banks have been mixed with Goldman Sachs announcing on Wednesday that it made 47% less in profits than in 2010 whilst Citigroup posted a 6% rise on the previous year.

Bank of America chief executive Brian Moynihan said: "We enter 2012 stronger and more efficient after two years of simplifying and streamlining our company."