Off the wire
Xinhua Middle East news summary at 2200 GMT, Dec. 14  • Spotlight: 8th round of intra-Syrian talks in Geneva ends with nothing but division  • Brazil raises growth forecast as economic recovery continues  • Ronaldinho mulls move into politics  • Oil prices rise on pipeline shutdown  • ALBA Political Council meets in Cuba to discuss bloc's challenges  • Search starts for world building of 2018, six China projects in running  • Two stabbing incidents in Dutch city Maastricht, one dead, several injured  • 3 dead in business plane crash in Germany  • Gold continues to rise as ECB keeps interest rates unchanged  
You are here:  

U.S. stocks tick down after Fed hikes rates

Xinhua,December 15, 2017 Adjust font size:

NEW YORK, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks reversed early gains to end lower Thursday as investors continued to digest the Federal Reserve's decision to raise interest rates for the third time in 2017.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 76.77 points, or 0.31 percent, to 24,508.66. The S&P 500 lost 10.84 points, or 0.41 percent, to 2,652.01. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 19.27 points, or 0.28 percent, to 6,856.53.

The Fed announced Wednesday afternoon that in view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the central bank decided to raise the target range for the federal funds rate to 1.25 to 1.50 percent.

"This change highlights that the (Federal Open Market) Committee expects the labor market to remain strong, with sustained job creation, ample opportunities for workers and rising wages," Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Wednesday at her last press conference before her four-year term ends early next year.

The central bank officials still envisioned three more rate hikes in 2018, unchanged from their forecast in September, according to the latest quarterly projections released on Wednesday.

On the economic front, advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for November 2017 were 492.7 billion U.S. dollars, an increase of 0.8 percent from the previous month and well above market consensus of 0.3 percent, the Commerce Department reported Thursday.

"There's still service consumption and December retail sales to worry about, but for now the fourth quarter growth rate seems safely back above 3 percent thanks to nonstore retailers more than anyone, again as reported after Thanksgiving," said Chris Low, chief economist at FTN Financial, in a note.

Meanwhile, in the week ending Dec. 9, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 225,000, a decrease of 11,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 236,000, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday. Enditem