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Fed economic outlook and GOP tax deal push stocks mostly higher

Fed economic outlook and GOP tax deal push stocks mostly higher

The major U.S. stock indexes finished mostly higher Wednesday, with small companies notching big gains as lawmakers in the House and Senate reached a deal on a sweeping tax-overhaul package.

The Dow Jones industrial average eked out its third record-high close in as many days, driven by a jump in Caterpillar. But a last-minute pullback in bank stocks left the Standard & Poor's 500 index slightly lower.

Packaged food and beverage stocks, healthcare companies and industrials shares accounted for much of the market's modest gains. Banks struggled as long-term bond yields edged down; lower yields make it tougher for banks to earn money from lending.

The decline in...

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