Stocks Ended Mixed amid Trade, Geopolitical Concerns

U.S. stocks ended mixed on Wednesday amid congressional hearings on trade and Federal Reserve policies and escalating geopolitical concerns. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 72.82 points, or 0.28%, to 25,985.16. The S&P 500 was down 1.52 points, or 0.05%, to 2,792.38. The Nasdaq Composite gained 5.21 points, or 0.07%, to 7,554.51.

Oil futures rose Wednesday after Saudi Arabia affirmed its commitment to reducing output, then got an added boost after data revealed an unexpected weekly drop in U.S. crude supplies. April West Texas Intermediate crude rose $1.44, or 2.6%, to settle at $56.94 a barrel. April Brent rose $1.18, or 1.8%, to $66.39 a barrel.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome’s Powell’s comments on the balance sheet Wednesday has convinced economists that the central bank will announce a timetable for the end of the runoff of assets from its $4 trillion balance sheet at its mid-March meeting.

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