Stocks Fall After Fed Decision

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A man walks past the New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street on May 10, 2021 in New York City.

AFP via Getty Images

Stocks fell on Wednesday as the Federal Reserve signaled it expects to increase the benchmark lending rate ahead of schedule.


Dow Jones Industrial Average

was down 320 points, or 0.9% and the

S&P 500

fell 0.9%. The

Nasdaq Composite

was 1% lower. The 10-year Treasury yield rose to 1.55% from 1.49% just before the Fed’s release. The U.S. Dollar Index, which becomes more attractive when bond yields in the U.S. rise, popped 0.5% to 90.99.

The Federal Reserve’s projections show an interest rate hike to 0.6% from 0% currently by the end of 2023, a bit sooner than what was anticipated. This comes after the producer-price index, released Tuesday, rose more than expected, excluding food and energy.

“That is hawkish and bad for overall risk assets,” writes Dennis DeBusschere, head of portfolio strategy research at Evercore. The term “hawkish” means that the Fed is confident in the economy and sees reason for rate hikes.

The Fed validated what many market participants and analysts believe, which is that the recent inflation is temporary, a result of normal prices compared to last year’s lockdown period and low supply of goods. “Inflation has risen, largely reflecting transitory factors,” the Fed said in its statement.

Data released Wednesday showed that housing starts for May came in at 1.57 million, below the estimate of 1.63 million. Building permits were 1.68 million, below the expected 1.73 million.


Nikkei 225 index

slipped 0.5% Wednesday, while China’s

CSI 300 index

lost 1.7%. Fresh data out of China showed signs of the country’s strong rebound from the Covid-19 pandemic starting to moderate, with industrial production and retail sales rising, but at a slower pace.


European Stoxx 600

index was 0.2% higher.

Copper prices slipped, after China said it plans to release national metal reserves in a bid to cool a surge in commodities prices. That also hit shares of mining stocks in Europe, with shares of

Anglo American

(ticker: ALL),

Rio Tinto

(RIO), and


(GLEN) weakening.

Shares of


(ORCL) were down 6% after the enterprise software company reported better-than-expected fiscal fourth-quarter results, but softer-than-anticipated guidance for the August quarter. The stock has rallied nearly 30% since mid-March, so investors may be compelled to take profits.

Dish Network

(DISH) gained 2.4% after getting upgraded to Buy from Hold at Pivotal Research.

U.S. Steel

(X) dropped 4.6% after getting assumed with Underweight from Neutral at JPMorgan.

General Motors

(GM) rose 1.6% after it said it would increase spending on electric vehicles by 30% by 2025.

Meme stocks were trading lower.

AMC Entertainment Holdings

(AMC) stock fell 10.3%, while


(GME) stock declined 2.9%.

Write to Jacob Sonenshine at [email protected]

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