US stocks trade mixed ahead of Fed decision

New York: US stocks traded mixed as investors shifted their focus from midterm elections to the central bank’s monetary policies.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Thursday was up 78.45 points, or 0.30 per cent, at 26,258.75. The S&P 500 declined 0.23 points, or 0.01 per cent, to 2,813.66, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 18.33 points, or 0.24 per cent, to 7,552.42.

The Federal Reserve is expected to release a statement after its two-day meeting which concluded on Thursday.

The central bank is expected to keep rates unchanged, but investors will look for clues about future moves on monetary policy.

The Fed has already raised interest rates three times this year and the market largely expects another hike before the year end.

Concerns about the pace of interest rate hikes led to market volatility last month.

The major stock indices had posted sharp gains following the US midterm elections. All three major indices jumped more than 2 per cent.

Investors were bullish following the election results as they believed that gridlock in Washington would help the market.

They expected US President Donald Trump’s pro-business policies to continue and Congress to provide a larger check on power with the Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives.