Wall Street had a rough start to trading on Wednesday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy statement, which is expected to include efforts to act more quickly to combat inflation.
The Fed has promised to keep rates low for longer than normal to help the US economy recover from the pandemic, but with prices skyrocketing to record highs for much of this year, the Federal Open Market Committee is poised to declare that its pandemic bond-buying programme will expire early next year.This would open the door for interest rate hikes to begin.
The meeting will conclude at 1900 GMT, and the committee will make estimates for inflation and interest rates for the next few years. “There are several possibilities for how the stock market may behave today. Even still, only three outcomes are possible: the stock market will end higher, lower, or unchanged.” Patrick J O’Hare of Briefing.com commented.
After 20 minutes of trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had dropped 0.4 percent to 35,411.94.
The broad-based S&P 500 index was down 0.3 percent at 4,620.36. The Nasdaq Composite Index, which is highly skewed toward technology, dropped 0.6 percent to 15,152.2.
Despite news that six women had sued Tesla, alleging a culture of sexual harassment at the company’s California facility and other sites, including unwanted touching, catcalls, and punishment for those who complained, Tesla’s stock was up 0.3 percent.