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Wall St extends losses on Trump policy worries

20 August 2017

But Fed officials continue to be anxious that inflation remains too low, according to the meeting minutes.

"As expected, the minutes of the latest meeting of the U.S. Federal Reserve gave no indication as to how the Fed might proceed in future".

According to the CME Group's Fedwatch tool, which bases any rate hike probability on Fed Fund futures contracts, the odds of a 25 basis point hike in December is 47 percent.

At 9:43 a.m. ET (1343 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 63.63 points, or 0.29 percent, at 21,961.24 and the S&P 500 was down 5.06 points, or 0.21 percent, at 2,463.05.

The minutes' release coincided with Wednesday's collapse of White House business advisory councils, which were scrapped by President Trump in the wake of several high-profile resignations following his comments on a white supremacist rally in Virginia that turned violent.

Wall Street stayed volatile following the release of the last Federal Reserve meeting's minutes, which showed policymakers appeared increasingly wary about recent weak inflation.

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Meanwhile the Fed plans to defer a decision on starting to pare back its enormous balance sheet "until an upcoming meeting", giving investors a little more detail as to when it will stop buying securities under its bond purchase programme.

Others expressed concerns that delaying further rate hikes could push inflation higher into risky territory. Treasury bonds were stronger, the dollar reversed early strength to finish lower, gold gained 0.3%, and oil fell 1.6% to extend its recent weakness.

Australia's benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.20%, as gains in the materials and health care sub-indexes were balanced by losses in the energy and telecommunication services sub-indexes.

Retailers, which have been in retreat much of the year, advanced after big box retailer Target reported that comparable store sales in the second quarter rose 1.3 per cent compared with the year-ago amid increasing store traffic. This news made the U.S. Dollar a less attractive investment, encouraging investors to sell the Greenback against all major currencies.

Overnight, the dollar traded near three-week highs against a basket of global currencies on Wednesday, after recent economic data pointing to a strengthening USA economy lifted expectations of a third rate hike later this year.

Wall St extends losses on Trump policy worries