Futures flat ahead of Fed's decision on interest rate
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[December 13, 2017]
By Rama Venkat Raman
(Reuters) - U.S. stocks futures pointed to
a flat open for Wall Street on Wednesday as investors awaited the
Federal Reserve's announcement on benchmark interest rate and assessed
the Democratic win in the Alabama Senate election.
** The S&P futures dipped 0.3 percent overnight after Democrat Doug
Jones won a U.S. Senate seat in deeply conservative Alabama on Tuesday,
narrowing the Republican's already slim Senate majority to 51-49.
** The central bank is widely expected to raise interest rates by 25
basis points, but more significantly, it may give its strongest hint yet
on how the Trump administration's tax overhaul could affect the U.S.
** The central bank had not factored in the new tax changes when it
forecast rate hikes for the next year.
** Investors will pay close attention to how it aims to balance a
stimulus-fueled economic boost with the ongoing weak inflation and tepid
wage growth that has curbed some policymakers' appetite for higher
** The Fed's policy statement and its latest economic projections, which
are due to be released at 2 p.m. ET (1900 GMT) after the final policy
meeting this year, will be watched to see if the Fed's individual rate
setter consensus still sits at three rate hikes for 2018.
** The S&P 500 and the Dow Industrials registered record closing highs
on Tuesday with a boost from bank stocks as investors eyed a potential
cut in U.S. corporate taxes and continued economic growth after strong
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Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, (NYSE) in
New York, U.S., December 1, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
** The Labor Department is expected to report that the consumer price index
increased 0.4 percent in November after edging up 0.1 percent in December. The
core CPI, which strips out the volatile food and energy components, likely
increased 0.2 percent after a similar gain in October. The report is scheduled
for release at 8:30 a.m. ET.
** Shares of Finisar <FNSR.O> soared 17.6 percent in premarket trading after
Apple said it would invest $390 million into the chipmaker to help make chips to
power iPhone features.
** Western Digital <WDC.O> shares were up 3.6 percent following its chip dispute
settlement with Toshiba <6502.T>.
Futures snapshot at 6:49 a.m. ET:
** Dow e-minis <1YMc1> were up 7 points, or 0.03 percent, with 10,366 contracts
** S&P 500 e-minis <ESc1> were up 0.25 points, or 0.01 percent, with 103,409
** Nasdaq 100 e-minis <NQc1> were up 8 points, or 0.13 percent, on volume of
(Reporting by Rama Venkat Raman in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)
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