US Stocks & Dollar Fumbles Ahead of Federal Reserve’s Monetary Policy Meeting

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US stocks finished with modest gains on Tuesday amid the Federal Reserve’s key monetary policy meeting and a slew of economic data.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 33.98 points, or 0.13 per cent, to 27,110.80. The S&P 500 rose 7.74 points, or 0.26 per cent, to 3,005.70. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 32.47 points, or 0.40 per cent, to 8,186.02, Xinhua reported.

Nine of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors closed higher, with real estate and utilities up 1.4 per cent and 0.89 per cent, respectively, leading the gainers. Energy fell 1.52 per cent, the worst-performing group.

The Fed’s September monetary policy meeting kicked off on Tuesday and the central bank is expected to announce its latest decision on interest rate Wednesday afternoon. Markets are betting high on further rate-cut moves.

“The rate cuts we expect in the fourth quarter reflect our conviction that employment will continue to slow, consumption will also fade and global crosscurrents will continue,” Chris Low, chief economist at FTN Financial, said in a note.

On the economic front, US industrial production rose 0.6 per cent in August after declining 0.1 per cent in July, the Federal Reserve reported on Tuesday.

Wall Street had expected a 0.4 per cent increase, according to a MarketWatch survey.

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