Market Watch: Fed In Focus


U.S. stocks were mixed on Wednesday, as investors and experts disagreed on the meaning of the latest Federal Reserve meeting minutes.

The second half of this week is expected to be dominated by Federal Reserve policy statements and press conferences.

At 2 p.m. today, the Federal Reserve released the minutes from its most recent meeting. The meeting was a rather tame one, and happened before the release of several points of disappointing economic data. Investors looked for clues as to interest rate hikes, which some Fed members provided when they all but ruled out any changes before June.

Later, however, investors looked at the Fed’s statement that they would revisit the subject on a ‘meeting-by-meeting’ basis as an indication that a September rate hike was still likely.

Perhaps the highlight of the week will come on Friday, when Fed Chair Janet Yellen speaks at the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce Economic Outlook Luncheon. The speech should give a more updated view of the Federal Reserve’s current outlook.

Here are the final numbers from Wall Street on Wednesday:

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 18,285.40 (-26.99) 

NASDAQ: 5,071.74 (+1.71)

S&P 500: 2,125.85 (-1.98)


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