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Fed projects three rate hikes in 2017

US stocks fall as Fed indicates three rate hikes

US stock indices retreated on Wednesday as Federal Reserve hiked short term rates by quarter percentage points to a range of 0.5%-0.75%. The dollar jumped after the dot plot of policy makers’ projections indicated three interest rate hikes in 2017 instead of just two as predicted in September projections. The live dollar index data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar’s strength against a basket of six rival currencies, closed 0.6% lower at 100.908. The Dow Jones data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar’s strength against a basket of six rival currencies, closed 1.1% higher at 102.124. The S&P 500 ended 0.8% lower settling at 2253.28, with all sectors closing in the red. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.6% to 19792.66. The high tech index Nasdaq finished 0.5% lower at 5436.67.

European stocks decline ahead of Fed decision

European stocks ended lower on Wednesday pulling back from eleven month high as investors braced for the Federal Reserve decision. The euro and British Pound slumped against the dollar as the Fed hiked short term rates quarter percentage points as widely antcipated. The Stoxx Europe 600 ended 0.5% lower. Germany’s DAX 30 declined 0.4% to 11244.84. France’s CAC 40 dropped 0.7% and UK’s FTSE 100 index lost 0.3% closing at 6949.19.

Asian stocks down on surprise Fed projections

Asian stocks are falling today after the Federal Reserve surprised the markets projecting a faster pace of interest rate hikes in 2017. Nikkei ended 0.1% higher at 19273.79 erasing earlier losses as yen weakened against the dollar. The Shanghai Composite Index is down 0.7% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index is 1.8% lower. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index fell 0.79% while the Australian dollar edged higher against the dollar.

Oil prices stabilize on expectations of market rebalancing

Oil futures prices are edging higher today after a sharp decline on Wednesday as traders see a global oil market headed to a substantial deficit in the first quarter of 2017 if the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other major producers implement their announced cuts of almost 1.8 million barrels per day in output. Prices were supported also by the US Energy Information Administration report US crude inventories last week declined by 2.56 million barrels to 483.19 million barrels. Oil prices fell yesterday for the first time in five sessions after a monthly report from OPEC showed that output rose in November. February Brent crude closed 3.3% lower at $53.90 a barrel on Wednesday on London’s ICE Futures exchange.

Thursday, 15 Dec, 2016 / 10:20

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