Stocks hover at record highs as impeachment vote looms

Trump claims 'unconstitutional abuse of power'

Stocks hovered near record highs on Wednesday as the U.S. House of Representatives prepared to vote on impeaching President Trump.

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Members of the House debated articles of impeachment for hours and were still expressing their views as the markets closed. A vote is scheduled to occur later on Wednesday evening, with a majority backing impeachment. The articles will then likely be sent to the Senate, which will then set the timeline for a trial.

In a scathing letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday, Trump called the impeachment process "an unconstitutional abuse of power."

All three of the major averages held little changed throughout the session before the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 turned red just ahead of the closing bell. The Nasdaq edged higher to finish in record territory.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
I:DJIDOW JONES AVERAGES29348.1+50.46+0.17%
SP500S&P 5003329.62+12.81+0.39%
I:COMPNASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX9388.944045+31.81+0.34%

FedEx shares were under pressure after the logistics giant posted disappointing second-quarter results and cut its full-year outlook, citing the loss of a "large customer." On Monday, Amazon blocked third-party sellers from using FedEx for Prime shipments.

Elsewhere on the earnings front, General Mills was gaining ground after reporting mixed second-quarter results. The Cheerios maker reported a profit of $581 million, boosted by a 16 percent jump in sales at its Blue Buffalo Pet Products division.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
FDXFEDEX CORPORATION159.98+0.44+0.28%
GISGENERAL MILLS53.85+0.13+0.24%

Fiat Chrysler fell after agreeing to terms for a merger with Peugeot, which would create the world's fourth-largest automaker.

Tesla shares hit a record high as short-sellers continued to run for the exits. Wednesday's gain pushed short-sellers' mark-to-market losses for 2019 to more than $2 billion.

Pacific Gas & Electric shares were sharply higher after the San Francisco-based utility won court approval for its $13.5 billion settlement with victims of California wildfires.

Meanwhile, Dish Network gained after chairman Charlie Ergen said three banks have lined up a total of $10 billion to fund the company's new wireless network.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
FCAUFIAT CHRYSLER AUTOMOBILES N.V.13.75-0.14-1.01%
TSLATESLA INC.510.50-2.99-0.58%
PCGPG & E CORP.13.08+0.45+3.56%
DISHDISH NETWORK CORPORATION36.79-0.03-0.08%

In commodities markets, gold slipped 0.1 percent to $1,479 an ounce and West Texas Intermediate crude oil was little changed at $60.84 a barrel.

U.S. Treasurys fell, causing the yield on the 10-year note to climb more than 3 basis points to 1.92 percent.

In Europe, fears of a hard Brexit weighed on markets, pushing France's CAC 40 down 0.2 percent and Germany's DAX lower by 0.53 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 was up 0.2 percent.

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Asian markets were mixed at the close, with Japan's Nikkei 225 down 0.6 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng up 0.2 percent. China's Shanghai Composite slipped 0.1 percent.