Wed, 20 Oct 2021

U.S. stocks open higher ahead of Fed decision

23 Sep 2021, 02:05 GMT+10

NEW YORK, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks rose on Wednesday morning as investors are awaiting a key statement from the Federal Reserve.

Shortly after the opening bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 155.58 points, or 0.46 percent, to 34,075.42. The S&P 500 added 16.21 points, or 0.37 percent, to 4,370.40. The Nasdaq Composite Index increased 33.09 points, or 0.22 percent, to 14,779.49.

Nine of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors advanced in morning trading, with energy up 2.65 percent, outpacing the rest. The health care and the communication services groups, however, struggled.

Investors remain focused on the Fed as the U.S. central bank will conclude its two-day meeting later Wednesday, followed by a key policy announcement and news conference by Fed Chair Jerome Powell.

Wall Street will look for clues about when the Fed may begin tapering its asset purchases, experts noted.

The Fed has pledged to keep its benchmark interest rate unchanged at the record-low level of near zero, while continuing its asset purchase program at least at the current pace of 120 billion U.S. dollars per month until "substantial further progress" has been made on employment and inflation.

Powell said last month that the central bank could start tapering asset purchases this year if the U.S. economy evolved broadly as anticipated.

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