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Stocks Rose as Investors Awaited Fed Decision

-- Wednesday, September 16, 2020, 11:52 --

U.S. stocks rose Wednesday morning, as investors awaited the Federal Open Market Committee’s (FOMC) September monetary policy statement and remarks from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately added 229.34 points, or 0.82%, to 28,224.94. The S&P 500 advanced 18.36 points, or 0.54%, to 3,419.56. The Nasdaq Composite gained 16.69 points, or 0.15%, to 11,207.01.

Oil futures rose sharply on Wednesday, lifted by U.S. government data that showed an unexpectedly large weekly drop in U.S. crude inventories, while Hurricane Sally curtailed production in the Gulf of Mexico. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery rose $1.53, or 4%, to $39.81 a barrel. November Brent was up $1.40, or 3.5%, to $41.93 a barrel.

The Federal Open Market Committee will release a policy statement at 2 p.m. Eastern on Wednesday. Powell will hold a press conference a half-hour later.

US retail sales rose 0.6% month-on-month in August, according to the Commerce Department’s reported Wednesday. This followed a 0.9% increase in July, which had been downwardly revised from the 1.2% gain previously reported.

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