Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Wall Street Suffers Downturn as Investors Await Fed Action

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Wall Street Suffers Downturn as Investors Await Fed Action

Article excerpt

NEW YORK (AP) -- Major stock indexes retreated Tuesday with few investors willing to bid stocks higher until the Federal Reserve confirms expectations it won't raise interest rates for now.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 9.60 points to 5,720.38, recovering from an early loss of nearly 35 points on a late-session rebound led largely by oil stocks in the blue-chip barometer.

Broad-market measures slipped too, with the technology-heavy Nasdaq market losing the most ground after the latest in a series of negative earnings outlooks from computer-related businesses.

Mostly, though, investors were waiting for Wednesday's conclusion of a two-day meeting by the Fed's policy makers, hoping there'll be no surprises after Monday's optimistic rally. The 75-point rise Monday in the Dow industrials was the biggest advance in more than three months.

"(Monday) was probably too much, representing the hope that the Fed will not raise rates this week," said A. Marshall Acuff Jr., market strategist at Smith Barney. "With the Fed decision right in front us, investors rightly are going to sit on their hands. There are probably more people interested in their four-day weekends than stocks."

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 10-to-9 margin on the New York Stock Exchange, where NYSE volume totaled 387.46 million shares as of 4 p.m., exceeding Monday's tally.

The NYSE's composite index fell 0.69 to 361.01; the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index fell 2.28 to 673.60; and the American Stock Exchange's market value index fell 0.69 to 579.56.

The Nasdaq composite index fell 5.76 to 1,191.69 as the latest indications of weak computer industry profit helped halt a powerful three-day rally.

Digital Equipment announced that its earnings for the just-ended quarter will be well below expectations due to trouble in its personal computer business and slow sales in Europe. …

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