U.S. stock markets ended higher on Wednesday, led by gains from technology and banking sector stocks.
The S&P 500 Index was up 2.11 points, or 0.16 percent, at 1,334.74. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 29.59 points, or 0.24 percent, at 12,423.49. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.31 percent.
Cisco Systems led gains in technology stocks after CEO John Chambers said in a memo to employees that the company has lost its way and will need to restore its credibility. Chambers suggested Cisco might change operations to narrow the company's focus.
Cisco Systems Inc (Nasdaq: CSCO) advanced 4.94 percent and Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE:HPQ) gained 2.21 percent, while Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Intel Corp. (NASDAQ:INTC) gained more than 1.2 percent.
Broadcom Corp. (NASDAQ:BRCM) advanced 3.9 percent to $39.95 as Oppenheimer has upgraded shares of BRCM to outperform from perform citing strong growth profile, management's stated efforts to pursue profitable growth, a more disciplined operating expense and compensation strategy.
Among banking stocks, JPMorgan Chase rose 2.28 percent and American Express gained 2.3 percent, while Bank of America advanced 1.86 percent.
Meanwhie, Monsanto Co. (NYSE:MON) led declines in commodity producers after the company reported second quarter sales of $4.13 billion against analysts’ estimation of $4.15 billion. The company shares declined 5.67 percent to $69.16.
Energy sector stocks declined after a report showed that crude oil supplies rose by 2 million barrels in the past week against analysts’ estimation of 1.3 million barrels.
Peabody Energy Corp. (NYSE:BTU) declined 3.7 percent and First Solar Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR) declined 1.58 percent, while Cameron International Corp. (NYSE:CAM) declined 2.52 percent.