Markets Right Now: Small-company stocks beat rest of market

Markets Associated Press

The latest on developments in financial markets (All times local):

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4 p.m.

Stocks closed higher on Wall Street, led by gains in smaller companies, technology giants and banks.

Facebook rose 2.1 percent Wednesday, while Bank of America added 2.4 percent and JPMorgan Chase rose 1.6 percent.

Smaller companies trounced the rest of the market, and an index tracking those stocks closed at another record high.

Banks were benefiting from higher bond yields and expectations that interest rates will continue to rise. That will help banks because they can charge higher interest rates on loans.

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High-dividend stocks like utilities and makers of consumer goods fell.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 10 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,507.

The Dow Jones industrial average increased 56 points, or 0.3 percent, to 22,340. The Nasdaq rose 73 points, or 1.1 percent, to 6,453.

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11:45 a.m.

Stock indexes are barely higher in midday trading on Wall Street as technology companies and banks post gains.

Facebook added 1.3 percent Wednesday, while Bank of America added 2.4 percent and JPMorgan Chase rose 1.2 percent.

Bank stocks were benefiting from higher bond yields and expectations that interest rates will continue to rise. That will help banks earn more because they can charge higher interest rates on loans.

The higher bond yields pushed down high-dividend stocks like utilities, real estate companies and makers of consumer goods. Procter & Gamble lost 2.2 percent.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,499.

The Dow Jones industrial average increased 11 points, or 0.1 percent, to 22,294. The Nasdaq rose 36 points, or 0.6 percent, to 6,416.

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9:35 a.m.

Technology companies and banks are leading stocks higher in early trading on Wall Street.

Facebook added 1.5 percent early Wednesday as the tech sector continued to rebound. Apple and Microsoft each rose about 1 percent.

Bank stocks rose along with bond yields and as investors expect interest rates to continue to rise. That will help banks make more money by charging higher interest rates on loans. Bank of America rose 1.9 percent and JPMorgan Chase gained 1.3 percent.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 10 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,507.

The Dow Jones industrial average increased 75 points, or 0.3 percent, to 22,359. The Nasdaq composite rose 50 points, or 0.8 percent, to 6,431.