REFILE-US STOCKS-S&P 500, Dow close higher in late session turnaround

Reuters

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 (Changes closes to close in headline)
    * Fed's Powell pushes back against inflation worries
    * Tesla falls as bitcoin sell-off weighs
    * Home Depot slips on consumer spending outlook
    * Indexes: Dow up 0.05%, S&P up 0.13%, Nasdaq off 0.50%

    By Stephen Culp
    NEW YORK, Feb 23 (Reuters) - Wall Street reversed course
late Tuesday, with the S&P 500 and the Dow whipsawing to
positive territory by the closing bell in a tug-of-war between
stocks that thrived amid lockdowns and those that stand to
benefit most from a reopening economy.
    The Nasdaq was the only major U.S. stock index to lose
ground on the day.
    Market-leading growth stocks, which thrived amid
pandemic-related lockdowns, weighed on stocks for much of the
day as investors favored shares that stand to gain most as
ongoing vaccine deployment allows economic restrictions to be
lifted.
    "People are buying the dip, a move that's been rewarded for
months in a one-sided market," said Dennis Dick, head of market
structure and a proprietary trader at Bright Trading LLC. 
    "It's tough to be a bear, it's really tough. The only fear
out there is the fear of missing out," Dick said.
    Fed Chairman Jerome Powell pushed back against concerns that
the central bank's economic support increased the risk of
spiraling inflation, and insisted that the central bank's
accommodative monetary policy would remain in place for "some
time."
    Testifying before the Senate Banking Committee, Powell said
the economic recovery was "uneven and far from complete," adding
that investors are mostly responding to an anticipated rebound
as vaccine deployment curbs the pandemic.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2KT11N
    "People took his words to heart. It made them go back to
their buying lists," said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment
officer at Independent Advisor Alliance in Charlotte, North
Carolina.  "For people with cash on the sidelines waiting to put
it to work maybe his interview this morning gave people a little
confidence to go back to drawing board and put money to work
this afternoon."
    The Dow Jones Industrial Average  .DJI  rose 15.66 points,
or 0.05%, to 31,537.35, the S&P 500  .SPX  gained 4.87 points,
or 0.13%, to 3,881.37 and the Nasdaq Composite  .IXIC  dropped
67.85 points, or 0.5%, to 13,465.20. 
    Of the 11 major sectors in the S&P 500, seven closed in
positive territory, but consumer discretionary  .SPLRCD  and
tech  .SPLRCT  shares suffered the largest percentage losses. 
    Tesla Inc  TSLA.O  lost 2.2% to close in negative territory
for the year, pulled down amid the tech selloff and falling
bitcoin  BTC=BTSP , which lost 12.0%. Tesla recently invested
$1.5 billion in the cryptocurrency.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2KT396
    Cryptocurrency miners Riot Blockchain Inc  RIOT.O  and
Marathon Patent Group Inc  MARA.O  plunged 24.6% and 23.0%,
respectively, while bitcoin bank Silvergate Capital Corp  SI.N 
slid 20.1%.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2KT09F
    Home improvement retailer Home Depot Inc  HD.N  posted
better-than-expected quarterly earnings. But it cast doubt on 
whether spiking sales, driven by homebound consumers taking on 
do-it-yourself projects amid COVID lockdowns, are sustainable
going forward. Its shares were the heaviest drag on the Dow,
falling 3.1%.
    Smaller rival Lowe's Companies Inc  LOW.N , expected to
report its results early Wednesday, also lost ground.
    Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a
1.59-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.58-to-1 ratio favored decliners.
    The S&P 500 posted 51 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the
Nasdaq Composite recorded 171 new highs and 54 new lows.  
    Volume on U.S. exchanges was 16.52 billion shares, compared
with the 16.06 billion average over the last 20 trading days.   

 (Reporting by Stephen Culp; Additional reporting by Herbert
Lash and Sinead Carew; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)
 ((stephen.culp@thomsonreuters.com; 646-223-6076;))

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