Several key issues, including continued worry over the global economy had Wall Street investors running scared again today after the Federal Reserve released its minutes from last month’s policy meeting in which they decided to raise interest rates. The minutes showed that some of the Board of Governors on the Fed’s Open Market Committee did express some concern at the Fed’s Dec. 15-16 meeting that inflation could get stuck at dangerously low levels, and that in turn sent the markets into a tailspin.
“Nearly all participants were now reasonably confident inflation would move back to 2 percent over the medium term, but some members said that their decision to raise the target range was a close call, particularly given the uncertainty about inflation dynamics.”
The Dow & S&P 500 closed below the psychologically important levels of 17,000 and 2,000 respectively. The markets also reacted negatively to the price of oil dropping over %5 1/2. U.S. crude futures settled down $2 a barrel, at $33.97 a barrel — its worst settle since Dec. 19, 2008. See what Stanley Fischer, Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve had to say about the declining price of oil, below.
Here are the final numbers from Wednesday, 1/6/16 on Wall Street:
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 16,906.51 (-252.15/ -1.47%)
NASDAQ: 4,835.77 (-55.67/ -1.14%)
S&P 500: 1,990.26 (-26.45 / -1.31%)