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Stock traders cheer on Bannon exit

Senior Counselor to the President Steve Bannon helps with last minute preparations before President Donald Trump announces his decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement at the White House June 1, 2017 in Washington, DC. Image copyright Getty Images

US stocks regained ground on Friday, after it was confirmed President Donald Trump's polarising adviser Steve Bannon would depart the White House.

Three major indexes turned higher in mid-morning trading and were modestly up by early afternoon.

Mr Bannon, a right-wing nationalist, helped shape the "America First" message of Mr Trump's election campaign.

He also supported some of Mr Trump's more radical economic positions.

In a recent interview with the left-leaning American Prospect magazine, Mr Bannon said the US was in an "economic war" with China, and called for aggressive protectionist moves.

Cheering broke out on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange as news of Mr Bannon's exit spread.

Stocks had been trading in record territory earlier this year, leading some to forecast a correction.

Some say Mr Trump's clashes with North Korea and the domestic fight stirred by his defence of a white supremacist rally in Virginia provided a trigger for the recent losses.

Stocks will welcome Mr Bannon's departure if it represents a victory for the more traditional economic advisers in the White House, such as Gary Cohn, a former investment banker, JP Morgan analysts wrote in a note sent to investors on Friday.

But they warned the firing may not improve odds of actual legislative victories if Mr Bannon remains active politically via his right wing news outlet Breitbart.

"Mr Bannon's departure ... could wind up having mixed ramifications depending on how it happens and what he winds up doing next," they wrote.

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