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  • NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. shares ended flat on Wednesday, with the Dow industrials eking out a record close after the latest data showed strength in the world's largest economy, while a mixed economic picture in Europe kept the region's stocks largely in check. Oil prices resumed declines after the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported a large build in U.S....

  • How the Dow Jones industrial average fared Wednesday Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 1:56 PM ET

    Stocks closed mostly higher Wednesday, a day after the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 18,000 for the first time. Investors were encouraged by the latest positive news on the U.S. economy. Trading ended early ahead of the Christmas holiday.

  • *Initial jobless claims fall for fourth straight week. *Biotech shares rebound after sharp two-day decline; energy falls. NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. stocks closed flat in a short session on Wednesday as investors found few reasons to push major indexes to their sixth straight day of gains despite strength in biotechs and bullish labor market data.

  • US stocks eke out gains in abbreviated trading day Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 1:08 PM ET

    Stocks are closing mostly higher a day after the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 18,000 for the first time. Trading ended early Wednesday ahead of the Christmas holiday. Markets will reopen on Friday.

  • US STOCKS SNAPSHOT-Wall St ends flat in short session Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 1:05 PM ET

    NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. stocks ended a short session flat on Wednesday as investors found few reasons to push the Dow and S&P 500 to their sixth straight day of gains despite strength in biotechs and bullish labor market data. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 6.74 points, or 0.04 percent, to 18,030.91, the S&P 500 lost 0.14 points, or 0.01 percent, to 2,082.03 and the...

  • US stocks move higher in abbreviated trading day Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 11:49 AM ET

    Stocks are moving slightly higher a day after the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 18,000 for the first time. Trading will close early Wednesday ahead of the Christmas holiday. The Dow rose 43 points, or 0.2 percent, to 18,067 as of 11:45 a.m. Eastern time.

  • *Initial jobless claims fall for fourth straight week. *Equity markets close at 1 p.m. in holiday-shortened session. NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. stocks edged higher on Wednesday, with the Dow and S&P 500 at records and on track for a sixth straight daily advance as biotech stocks rallied and data pointed to improving economic conditions.

  • US stocks open higher in abbreviated trading day Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 9:40 AM ET

    Stocks are opening slightly higher a day after the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 18,000 for the first time. Trading will close early Wednesday ahead of the Christmas holiday. The Dow rose 37 points, or 0.2 percent, to 18,060 as of 9:35 a.m. Eastern time.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. stocks edged higher at the open on Wednesday on top of a five-day winning streak that pushed the Dow and S&P 500 to new closing records and on the latest piece of economic data indicating the economy is strengthening.

  • NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. stocks were set for a modestly higher open on Wednesday on the heels of a five-day winning streak that pushed the Dow and S&P 500 to new closing records and on the latest piece of economic data indicating the economy is strengthening. "Economic data has been consistently positive," said Peter Kenny, chief market strategist at Clearpool Group in...

  • Smith & Nephew outperforms sluggish European markets Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 8:43 AM ET

    *UK's FTSE 100 rises 0.2 pct to 6,609.93 points. The 7.7 percent jump in Smith& Nephew, after Bloomberg News reported U.S. rival Stryker was planning a takeover offer for it, allowed Britain's blue-chip FTSE 100 index to end 0.2 percent higher at 6,609.93 points. France's CAC ended down 0.4 percent as data showing another set of record unemployment figures in...

  • *Equity markets close at 1 p.m. in holiday-shortened session. NEW YORK, Dec 24- U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Wednesday, after a five-day winning streak pushed the Dow and S&P 500 to new closing records and ahead of data on the labor market. *Equity markets will operate on a shortened trading schedule Wednesday, closing at 1 p.m. ahead of the Christmas...

  • *Rouble dips after S&P puts Russia on junk downgrade warning. LONDON, Dec 24- The strongest growth for the world's largest economy in over a decade meant there was plenty of pre-Christmas cheer in global markets on Wednesday, as stocks continued their strong run and the dollar hovered at an 8-1/ 2 year high. The data drove both the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 benchmark...

  • The CSI300 index of the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen fell 2.8 percent, to 3,230.39, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 1.9 percent, to 2,972.53 points, dropping below 3,000- considered a sentiment support level- for the first time since Dec. 17. Among the most active stocks in Shanghai were GD Power, up 0.9 percent to 4.53 yuan; Bank Of China,...

  • Nikkei jumps to 2-1/2 week high on rosy U.S. data Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 1:18 AM ET

    TOKYO, Dec 24- Japanese stocks rallied on Wednesday after Wall Street hit a record closing-high on the back of data pointing to rapid momentum in the U.S. economy, which boosted risk appetite and lent weight to last week's positive assessment by the Federal Reserve. The Nikkei benchmark gained 1.2 percent in thin trade to 17,854.23, its highest close since Dec. 8...

  • US stocks eke out gains in abbreviated trading day Wednesday, 24 Dec 2014 | 12:52 AM ET

    Investors welcomed Labor Department data showing that applications for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in seven weeks. The news came a day after the Commerce Department estimated that the economy grew in the July-September quarter at the fastest pace in 11 years. "We're still giddy after yesterday's GDP," said Chris Gaffney, a senior...

  • China stocks fall, some see market stalling Tuesday, 23 Dec 2014 | 11:50 PM ET

    *Hong Kong market shuts, to reopen Monday. SHANGHAI, Dec 24- China stock indexes fell on Wednesday, with signs emerging in futures contracts that what analysts originally saw as a profit-taking blip earlier in the week for mainland stocks may be gaining traction. The Hong Kong market, which closed at midday Wednesday and won't reopen until Monday, edged up.

  • Hong Kong shares edge up 0.1 pct in half-day session Tuesday, 23 Dec 2014 | 11:40 PM ET

    HONG KONG, Dec 24- Hong Kong shares finished marginally higher on Wednesday in a short trading session, as the stock exchange closed early for the Christmas holiday and will not reopen until Monday. Among the most actively traded stocks on Hong Kong's main board were ICBC, down 1.3 percent to HK $5.46 CCT Land, unchanged at HK $0.02 and Bank of China, down 0.7 percent...

  • *Nikkei advances on back of record day on Wall Street. TOKYO, Dec 24- Japanese stocks rallied on Wednesday after Wall Street raced to a record closing-high on the back of data showing decisive strength in the U.S. economy, which lifted risk appetite and backed last week's upbeat assessment by the Federal Reserve. On Wall Street the Dow closed above 18,000 for the...

  • TOKYO, Dec 24- Japanese stocks rallied and the dollar stood tall on Wednesday thanks to surprisingly robust U.S. economic growth, helping investors head into the Christmas holidays in a more relaxed mood after the global markets turbulence of the past two weeks. Tokyo's Nikkei followed suit, rising 1 percent and South Korea's Kospi was up 0.2 percent.