US stocks end mostly up as House impeaches Trump again

Speaker Nancy Pelosi raps her gavel after the House voted to impeach US President Donald Trump over the US Capitol riots. PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - Wall Street stocks finished a choppy session mostly higher on Wednesday (Jan 13) as Intel rallied on an executive shakeup while investors monitored a debate on impeaching US President Donald Trump.

Investors largely shrugged off the happenings in Washington, where Trump was impeached for the second time in a House vote that finished after the market closed.

The Federal Reserve said most regions of the US reported "economic activity increased modestly," and employment rose, albeit slowly, while housing sales remained strong and manufacturing stayed on an upward trajectory.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down less than 0.1 per cent at 31,060.47.

The broad-based S&P 500 added 0.2 per cent at 3,809.84, while the tech-rich advanced 0.4 per cent to 13,128.95.

Markets remain near all-time highs as investors bet on an improving 2021 economy in anticipation of more US stimulus once Joe Biden is inaugurated as president.

"The market isn't too worries about politics right now," said Gregori Volokhine, president of Meeschaert Financial Services.

"The page on Donald Trump's presidency is turning, even if there is still controversy over him."

Shares of Intel surged 7 per cent as the chipmaker named VMware head Pat Gelsinger as its new chief executive, replacing Bob Swan after pressure from activist investors. VMware fell 6.8 per cent.

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Wall Street's benchmark S&P 500 index closed slightly higher on Wednesday with defensive sectors leading gains as investors waited for details of the next US fiscal stimulus plan and Congress began President Donald Trump's impeachment hearings.

Target fell 1.2 per cent as it reported a 17.2 per cent jump in comparable sales growth for the key holiday shopping season.

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