Stocks close higher in holiday shortened week | National News

FILE – Pedestrians pass the New

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks closed slightly higher on Christmas Eve, as investors went into the holiday weekend not bothered by President Donald Trump’s threat not to sign a major economic stimulus package approved by Congress this week.

Trading was extremely light in the abbreviated session ahead of the Christmas holiday. Trading on the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq ended at 1 p.m. ET instead of the usual 4 p.m. ET. Volume was a less than half of a typical trading day.

The S&P 500 index closed up 13.05 points, or 0.4%, to 3703.06. Despite the gains, the index ended the week down 0.2%. Relatively safe investments like utilities and real estate were among the biggest gainers, while energy stocks fell.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 70.04 points, or 0.2%, to 30,199.87 and the Nasdaq composite rose 33.62 points, or 0.3%, to 12,804.73.

Investors remain focused on Washington, where Democrats in Congress are expected to try to make alterations to the $900 billion COVID stimulus bill that President Trump has threatened to veto. Trump has asked for higher individual payments to Americans, something Democrats support but which is unlikely to get a vote in the Republican-held Senate.

The hope has been that Trump will back away from his veto threat and the stimulus package might tide the economy over until widespread vaccinations can help the world begin to return to normal.