Stocks Ended Mixed, Dow Up A Sixth Day

The Dow Jones Industrial Average extended its winning streak to a sixth-consecutive session on Wednesday, finding support from largely positive bank stress tests, but the S&P 500 Index failed to shake off weakness by the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 16.42 points, or 0.12%, to close at 13,194.10. The S&P 500 lost 1.67 points, or 0.12%, to end at 1,394.28. The Nasdaq Composite edged up by 0.85 point to 3,040.73.

The Federal Reserve will try to make it clearer whether new banking rules apply to small lenders, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said in remarks on Wednesday. Bernanke said the goal is to prevent community banks from wasting time and money trying to figure out if a new regulation applies to them.

Developed economies will pick up steam this year thanks to an array of ultra-loose monetary policies from major central banks and amid new signs of progress in the euro zone’s debt crisis, Reuters polls found.

Crude inventories rose last week, with stocks at the trading hub in Cushing, Oklahoma increasing to an nine-month high, while oil products fell, data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed on Wednesday. Crude oil inventories rose 1.75 million barrels to 347.45 million barrels in the week to March 9.

Greece’s cabinet unanimously approved the terms of its international bailout on Wednesday, hours after euro zone countries formally approved the 130 billion euro ($169 billion) financial package that Athens needs to stay afloat.

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