How major United States stock market indexes fared Wednesday

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Eastern. The Dow Jones industrial average had edged up a mere 0.1 percent. But they still are forecasting another increase of 0.25 of a percentage point by the end of the year - a signal they think the economy is still on solid ground.

Philippine equities reached a record high on Monday, led by market's optimism over the country's tax reform package, while other markets in the region remained cautious ahead of the Fed meeting.

Along with the policy statement Wednesday, Fed members will release their forecasts for the economy and the course of interest rates, which could give a clearer picture of the sentiment in the central bank.

Dennis de Jong, at UFX.com, said: "The dollar has received the shot in the arm it needed with the Federal Reserve confirming that it intends to end QE stimulus". Consequently, the Committee continues to expect that, with gradual adjustments in the stance of monetary policy, economic activity will expand at a moderate pace, and labor market conditions will strengthen somewhat further.

Also, it is likely the Fed will announce it will start shrinking its balance sheet as soon as October.

The Fed plans to gradually allow an increasing amount of proceeds from maturing securities to be run off the central bank's books each month. Banks benefit from higher rates, which can translate into higher profits from lending money.

STORM WEATHERED: Progressive added 2.7 percent after the insurer reported lower-than-expected losses from Hurricane Harvey. Over the past 12 months, USA home sales have risen only 0.2 percent.

Markets are pricing in a 56 percent probability of the Fed raising rates in December. Bank of America rose 1.4 percent. ConocoPhillips gained 1.3 percent. Trump's remarks came during his debut speech to the U.N. General Assembly. J.M. Smucker shed $2.60, or 2.4 percent, to $106.91. Skyworks Solutions slid $5.83, or 5.4 percent, to $102.10.

"What's particularly striking is how little markets care", Goldberg said.

CLOUD CONCERNS: Adobe Systems fell 4 percent. Aetna slid $5.58, or 3.5 percent, to $155.42. The stock lost $4.38 to $22.65.

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Bond prices fell, sending yields higher.

On the M&A front, Thyssenkrupp (TKAG.DE) rose more than 2 percent after it and India's Tata Steel TISC.N agreed to merge their European steel operations to create the continent's No.2 steelmaker.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index of stocks has risen just 0.08 percent ahead of the Fed announcement at 2 p.m.

Energy stocks were rising along with the price of crude oil early Wednesday. Other energy futures also closed lower. Heating oil fell 1 cent to $1.77 a gallon. Natural gas declined 3 cents to $3.09 per 1,000 cubic feet.

METALS: Gold slipped 20 cents to $1,310.60 an ounce.

In base metals, copper for December delivery was recently down 0.2%, to $2.9645 a pound.

The Japanese yen was weaker by 0.5% at 111.40 per dollar. The euro weakened to $1.1873 from $1.1892. In Europe, Germany's DAX was flat, while France's CAC 40 rose 0.2 percent.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index was up 0.3 percent.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.1 percent.

The Australian dollar was 0.15 percent higher at $0.7972 AUD=D4 . Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell almost 0.4 percent.

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