Close Update: Wall Street Pares Gains But Markets Post First Weekly Advance in Three

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The main U.S. markets posted their first weekly advances in three weeks, closing mostly stronger but off the day's highs as jitters over the probe into Russian meddling in U.S. politics briefly the positive sentiment that drove much of the session.

Health care and utilities had some of the best increases among the 11 S&P 500 sectors, while consumer discretionary was down 0.4% in the biggest decline. On the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Pfizer ( PFE ) and UnitedHealth ( UNH ) led the gainers while Caterpillar ( CAT ) has the largest loss.

Declines in Kraft Heinz (KFC) after the food company's earnings kept the Nasdaq Composite under water.

All the measures gave back much of their advances as Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said the Special Counsel's office had charged 13 Russian nationals and three Russian companies with seeking to interfere in the U.S. political system, including the 2016 presidential election that saw Donald Trump emerge the winner.

Markets had pushed higher before Rosenstein's press conference and reclaimed some of the losses after he said that the Americans who were recruited and paid by Russians to engage in political activities didn't know they were communicating with nationals of that country.

And equities still made weekly gains even as investors bargain hunted their way back into the stock markets following sharp selling earlier in the month. The Dow was up 4.2% in the week, the S&P 500 gained 4.3% and the Nasdaq was up 5.3%.

Markets will be closed Monday for President's Day and the shortened week's agenda includes the minutes from last month's Federal Open Market Committee meeting and comments from a number of Fed speakers.

Here's where the markets stood by the close:


Dow Jones Industrial Average was 19.01 points (+0.08%)

S&P 500 was up 1.02 points (+0.04%)

Nasdaq Composite Index was down 16.96 points (-0.23%)


FTSE 100 was up 0.83%

Nikkei 225 was up 1.19%

Hang Seng Index was up 1.97%

Shanghai China Composite Index was up 0.45%


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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2016 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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