Global shares drift as investors pause ahead of Fed

Global stock markets traded in fairly narrow ranges Tuesday as investors paused for breath, a day after U.S. stock markets struck a record high and geared up for the latest interest rate decision from the U.S. Federal Reserve.

KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, France's CAC 40 was up 0.1 percent at 5,234 while Germany's DAX was 0.1 percent lower at 5,234. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares rose 0.4 percent to 7,278. U.S. stocks were poised for a steady opening with Dow futures and the broader S&P 500 futures up 0.1 percent. On Monday, the two benchmark U.S. indexes extended gains, albeit modestly, to close at record highs.

THE FED: The consensus in markets is that the Fed will hold off from raising interest rates again but indicate that another increase could come in December. But traders will be listening for any indications the central bank could move sooner.

ANALYST TAKE: "While we're not expecting any surprises out of the meeting, in terms of another rate hike for example, we should learn a lot about how the Fed plans to tighten monetary policy going forward and that will determine how U.S. yields and the dollar respond," said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA.

CURRENCIES: In the run-up to the decision, the dollar was largely steady, with the euro up 0.2 percent to $1.1974. Against the Japanese yen, the dollar was 0.1 percent lower at 111.48 yen.

ASIA'S DAY: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 added nearly 2.0 percent to finish at 20,299.38, coming off a national holiday on Monday. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 edged down 0.1 percent to 5,713.60. South Korea's Kospi lost nearly 0.1 percent to 2,416.05. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell nearly 0.4 percent to 28,051.41, while the Shanghai Composite dipped 0.2 percent to 3,356.84.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude rose 36 cents to $50.27 a barrel while Brent crude, used to price international oils, advanced 17 cents to $55.67.