US STOCKS-Wall St edges up with consumer discretionary shares

miércoles 25 de febrero de 2015 14:23 GYT

* HP drops after results, outlook

* New home sales fall less than expected

* Indexes: Dow up 0.1 pct, S&P up 0.1 pct, Nasdaq up 0.2 pct (Updates to midday)

By Caroline Valetkevitch

NEW YORK, Feb 25 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were slightly higher in early afternoon trading on Wednesday, boosted by gains in consumer discretionary shares and upbeat housing data.

The S&P 500 consumer discretionary index, up 0.8 percent, gave the benchmark index its biggest lift. Shares of TJX were up 3.7 percent at $69.65 after results, while Target rose 0.4 percent to $77.28 after a stronger-than-expected jump in same-store sales and profits for the fourth quarter.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's testimony to a House of Representatives committee provided few clues for investors on the timing of an interest rate hike.

"It's a lack of anything negative keeping the market" up, said Michael James, managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles. "The market's in an uptrend until something displaces that uptrend and nothing from Chairwoman Yellen was a notable displacement of that uptrend."

Single-family home sales in January fell less than expected and supply rose to its highest level since 2010.   Continuación...