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Wall Street closes largely lower as players stand aside

The Federal Reserve kept rates unchanged but expects further increases in the months ahead
Federal Reserve
The Federal Reserve is expected to keep rates unchanged

US stocks settled mostly softer on Thursday as the market digested the Fed's decision to keep rates unchanged. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.02% to finish at 26,185. 

The S&P 500 was off 0.25% to close at 2,806.

The Nasdaq fell 0.53% to end at 7,530. 

The Russell 2000 small cap index slipped 0.42% to conclude at 1,575.

n Canada, the TSX was down 0.25% to trade around 15,330. 

1:10 PM: US stocks mixed this afternoon as investors await the Fed’s decision

The US benchmarks were mixed this afternoon.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up about 65 points with bellwether Caterpillar trailing lower.

The S&P 500 was down around 5 points by midday.

Tripadvisor Inc (NASDAQ:TRIP) was a top gainer after the travel site reported better-than-expected quarterly results.

The Nasdaq dipped nearly 35 points in afternoon trading with Wynn Resorts Ltd (NASDAQ:WYNN) and chipmaker Qualcomm Inc (NASDAQ:QCOM) as two of the top decliners.

The Russell 2000 was down slightly this afternoon.

Specialty chemicals company Koppers Holdings Inc (NYSE:KOP) was one of the worst-performing stocks on the small-cap index after disappointing quarterly results.

Up north, the TSX was down about 20 points as a decline in oil prices weighed on energy stocks.

10:00 AM: US stocks fall as investors look to Federal Reserve for guidance

US stocks took a tumble on Thursday as investors shifted their focus from the midterm election results to the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy moves.

At its policy meeting today, the Fed is expected to hold interest rates steady. However, investors will be parsing the tea leaves for signs of what direction the US central bankers intend to take on monetary policy going forward.

Early in the session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average index slipped before drifting back into positive territory and then falling back and shedding 4 points to hit 26,177.  

The S&P 500, meanwhile, slipped 4 points to 2,810 while the tech-laden Nasdaq fell by 16 points to 7,555.

Up in Canada, Toronto’s TSX nudged down by 3 points to 15,366 while the Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks was also off by 4 points at 1,577.

7:13 AM: Wall Street shares seen lower as tide turns after midterms; Fed meet in view

The rally in US stocks seen after the mid-term results is seen coming off the boil Thursday as traders await the next stance on interest rate hikes from the Fed.

Wall Street futures are pointing lower in pre-market, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 86 points.

The S&P 500 futures are off nearly 14 and the Nasdaq futures are down around 51 points.

 

The talk of the town  Wednesday was the result, which President Trump hailed as a victory, despite the Democrats winning back the House of Representatives.

 

Republicans however kept control of the Senate.

The Dow Jones closed a massive 2.13% higher, or 545 points at 26,180, while the S&P 500 added around 58. The tech heavy Nasdaq index finished over 194 points higher at 7,570.

In morning trade in Europe today, FTSE 100 is ahead by around 21 points at 7,138 as Brexit negotiations reach fever pitch.

The German DAX is off around 27 points and the French CAC 40 is five points lower in the wake of disappointing growth projections.

Connor Campbell, analyst at Spreadex, summed up: "As November’s Federal Reserve meeting grows ever closer the markets lost some of their post-midterms enthusiasm."

He added: "It appears that investors are getting nervy ahead of the evening’s Fed statement.

"The central bank is expected to hold steady despite October’s bloody trading and the latest political reshuffle in the US, leaving an interest rate rise in December very much be on the cards."

In Asia overnight, shares mostly gained:  the Nikkei 225 added over 401 points to  22,486, but the Shanghai Composite Index lost nearly  six points at 2,635.


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