US stocks close mixed after trading higher

(190321) — NEW YORK, March 21, 2019 (Xinhua) — Traders wearing denim clothing and jeans work at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) during the initial public offering (IPO) of Levi Strauss & Co., in New York, the United States, March 21, 2019. Blue jeans giant Levi Strauss & Co. began trading on the NYSE on Thurday. The 166-year-old company first went public in 1971, but has been private for the last 34 years. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)

New York, Nov 14 (IANS) US stocks ended mixed on Wednesday. The Dow increased 0.33 per cent to 27,783.59, and the S&P 500 rose 0.07 per cent to 3,094.04, while the Nasdaq decreased 0.05 per cent to 8,482.10.

Earlier in the day, the stocks traded higher as investors digested Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s latest testimony, Xinhua news agency reported.

At midday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 60.66 points, or 0.22 per cent, to 27,752.15. The S&P 500 increased 4.12 points, or 0.13 per cent, to 3,095.93. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 8.42 points, or 0.10 per cent, to 8,494.28.

Powell said the central bank is unlikely to move on interest rates given the sustained economic expansion when he addressed the Congressional Joint Economic Committee.

“We see the current stance of monetary policy as likely to remain appropriate as long as incoming information about the economy remains broadly consistent with our outlook of moderate economic growth, a strong labour market, and inflation near our symmetric 2 per cent objective,” Powell said in prepared remarks.

But he added that challenges including low inflation and weakness overseas remain.

The central bank has already cut its benchmark rate three times this year to a range of 1.5 per cent to 1.75 per cent.

On the economic front, US consumer price index rose more than expected in October. The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers rose 0.4 per cent on a seasonally adjusted basis after being unchanged in September, the US Labor Department on Wednesday.

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