Wall Street flat as banks gain, utilities drag

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REUTERS: Wall Street was little changed in choppy trading on Tuesday, as gains in bank and telecom stocks were offset by losses in utilities and materials.

The S&P 500 financial index rose 0.43 percent, led by a 1.2 percent rise in Wells Fargo . Chief Executive Officer Tim Sloan said at an investor conference that the bank’s profits were likely to be hit in the short term by higher interest rates, but on longer term, the hike would be beneficial.

Goldman Sachs , Citigroup and Berkshire Hathaway were also trading higher.

The telecom services index was on track for its best day in two weeks, helped by gains in AT&T and Verizon .

AT&T gave the biggest boost to the S&P 500, rising 1.3 percent after CEO Randall Stephenson told investors that the new streaming television service DirectTV Now has so far exceeded expectations.

Verizon also gained 1.3 percent after striking a deal to sell 29…

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