Financials Climb as Fed Minutes Indicate Continued Rate Increases - Financials Roundup

Shares of banks, lenders and other financial companies were higher after minutes from the Federal Reserve's December meeting showed most officials backed continued gradual rate increases. Investors have said the central bank's gradual pace given steady economic growth is favorable for stocks to continue rising. Officials expressed growing confidence in the strength of the labor market and the economy more broadly and debated whether new tax cuts approved by Congress would require them to raise short-term interest rates faster this year. In corporate news, a U.S. national-security panel refused to approve a deal for Chinese billionaire Jack Ma's Ant Financial Services Group to buy MoneyGram International Inc., the companies said Tuesday, in the latest sign the U.S. is tightening scrutiny of investment from China at a time of greater tensions between the two countries. HNA Group Co. has fallen behind in repaying loans it obtained from employees and individual investors on an internet-lending platform, a sign it is having difficulty meeting some debt obligations. Founders Fund, the venture-capital firm co-founded by Peter Thiel, has bought large sums of bitcoin that are now worth hundreds of millions of dollars. (

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 03, 2018 17:27 ET (22:27 GMT)