US Stock Indexes Mostly Higher

US Stock Indexes Mostly Higher

(AP) -- U.S. stock indexes were mostly higher in early trading Wednesday, giving up some of their gains following the market's best day in two months. Banks were up sharply as bond yields and interest rates rose on new data showing the economy grew at a brisk pace in the third quarter. Health care stocks also rose. Technology companies lagged the most.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose less than 1 point to 2,627 as of 10:19 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 66 points, or 0.3 percent, to 23,903. The Nasdaq composite fell 54 points, or 0.8 percent, to 6,857. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 10 points, or 0.7 percent, to 1,546. More stocks rose than fell on the New York Stock Exchange.

GROWTH SPURT: The Commerce Department estimated that the U.S. economy grew at an annual pace of 3.3 percent from July through September. That would be the fastest rate in three years. The new estimate helped lift bond yields and interest rates. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 2.39 from 2.34 percent late Tuesday.

BANKS BUMPED UP: Banks and other financial stocks posted solid gains, getting a boost from rising bond yields. Banks benefit from rising bond yields because it allows them to charge higher interest rates on loans. SunTrust Banks climbed $2.50, or 4.2 percent, to $61.54.

NEW TOPPING: Chipotle Mexican Grill gained 4 percent after the restaurant chain said it is looking for a new CEO. The company is trying to recover from a sales slump following a series of food safety scares. Founder Steve Ells, who currently serves as chairman and CEO, will transition to executive chairman once someone new is in place at the top post. The stock gained $11.54 to $297.40.

TECH TUMBLE: Amazon, Facebook, Google parent Alphabet and other big technology companies were giving up some of their recent gains. The sector is still by far the biggest riser this year, with a gain of 37.7 percent. Amazon gave up $24.20, or 2 percent, to $1,169.40. Facebook was off $6.52, or 3.56 percent, to $175.90. Alphabet fell $25.07, or 2.4 percent, to $1,038.22.

PINK SLIP SLIDE: Autodesk sank 16 percent after the design software company said it will eliminate 1,150 jobs, or about 13 percent of its current workforce. Autodesk said the cuts will cost $135 million to $149 million. The company had a disappointing third quarter and gave a weak forecast. The stock fell $20.70 to $109.25.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude gave up 6 cents to $57.93 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 9 cents to $63.15 per barrel.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 112.08 yen from 111.55 yen on Tuesday. The euro strengthened to $1.1842 from $1.1837. The pound rose to $1.3409 from $1.3373 on reports that the British government is closer to agreeing on a divorce bill with the European Union.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: Major European stock indexes were mixed. Germany's DAX gained 0.9 percent, while the CAC 40 of France rose 0.8 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 slid 0.3 percent. Earlier in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index gained 0.5 percent, while South Korea's Kospi edged 0.1 percent lower. Australia's S&P ASX 200 added 0.5 percent. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong fell 0.2 percent. India's Sensex slipped 0.1 percent, while shares in Southeast Asia were mixed.

(BE)