U.S. Stocks Open With Slight Gains Ahead Of Fed Decision

By Ryan VlastelicaMarketsMarketWatch Pulse

U.S. stocks rose modestly in early trading on Wednesday as investors looked ahead to the Federal Reserve's monetary-policy update, where the central bank is widely expected to raise interest rates. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 19 points, or 0.1%, to 21,348. The S&P 500 gained 0.1%, or 2.5 points, to 2,443. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 14 points, or 0.2%, to 6,235. In the latest economic data, read on consumer prices and retail sales came in below expectations. The data pushed bond prices higher, which resulted in a sharp drop in Treasury yields. The yield for the benchmark 10-year note slumped 5.8 basis points to 2.154%, hitting its lowest level since November. Investors also digested news of a shooting in Northern Virginia, where House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and several people were injured after a gunman opened fire during a baseball practice. In company news, H&R Block Inc. rose 6.4% after posting earnings that beat expectations.

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