Market Overview

Stock futures are flat as investors await Federal Reserve update

Stock futures are flat as investors await Federal Reserve update

U.S. stock index futures were little changed during early morning trading Wednesday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s update. Futures contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average were just 9 points lower. S&P 500 futures were also largely flat, while Nasdaq 100 futures traded mildly higher. Stocks pulled back from record levels during Tuesday’s trading session, with the S&P 500 closing 0.2% lower after hitting an all-time high earlier in the day. The Dow slid nearly 100 points and the Nasdaq Composite dipped 0.7% amid weakness in shares of Big Tech.

The Federal Reserve kicked off its two-day meeting on Tuesday. The central bank is not expected to make any policy moves, but it could signal that it’s beginning to think about easing its bond-buying policy. The Fed will also release new forecasts on Wednesday, which could indicate a possible first rate hike penciled in for 2023. Previously, Fed officials hadn’t come to a consensus for a rate hike through 2023.

The meeting comes as inflation heats up, with producer prices rising at their fastest annual rate in nearly 11 years during May. This has prompted some, including Paul Tudor Jones, to call for the central bank to re-think its easy monetary policy. The central bank has been buying $120 billion worth of bonds each month as the economy continues to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Minutes from the central bank’s last meeting showed that some Fed officials said it could be appropriate to start discussing adjustments to the bond-buying program should the economy continue to recover. Economists predict that while some of these discussions could begin, concrete details will not be revealed until later this year.

Stock futures are flat as investors await Federal Reserve update, CNBC, Jun 16

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