NEW YORK, New York - U.S. stocks rose strongly on Wednesday as retailers reported positive earnings and the minutes of last month's Federal Reserve meeting revealed members debated a larger rate cut than they ultimately decided on.
The U.S. dollar remained well bid, particularly against the euro, yen and Swiss franc.
"A couple of participants indicated that they would have preferred a 50 basis point cut," the minutes of the July 30/31 meeting said.
At the close of trading Wednesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was ahead 241.45 points, or 0.93%, at 26,203.89.
The Standard and Poor's 500 rose 23.92 points or 0.82% to 2,924.43.
The Nasdaq Composite climbed 71.65 points, or 0.9%, to 8,020.21.
The euro eased to 1.1084. The British pound was weaker at 1.2123. The Japanese yen fell to 106.60, while the Swiss franc dipped to 0.9827.
The Canadian, Australian and New Zealand dollars were little changed at 1.3288, 0.6778 and 0.6400.
Equity markets overseas were mixed on Wednesday. The German Dax rose by 1.30%. In Paris, the CAC 40 did better, rising by 1.70%.
In London, the FTSE 100 climbed 1.11%.
On Asian markets, in Japan, the Nikkei 225 lost 58.65 points or 0.28% to 20,618.87.
The Shanghai Composite finished flat, ahead just 0.33 of point or 0.01% at 2,880.33.
The All Ordinaries in Australia did worst of all, falling 54.80 points or 0.83% to 6,572.60.