Traders seemed relieved that the FOMC minutes and the subsequent Q &A with Fed Chair Yellen produced no real surprises. The taper of QE continues and interest rates will remain at zero for some time. Ms. Yellen didn’t seem all that concerned about inflation, as she dismissed recent PPI and CPI data as “noisy”. As for future guidance, Ms. Yellen used the term “it depends”. That pretty much says it all. Once again the Fed’s actions are data dependent (some might say reactionary). The result was a nice late afternoon rally in stocks with the S&P 500 hitting a new all-time high.
By the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 98 points to finish the day at 16,906. The S&P 500 was up 15 points to close at 1956. Gold was up $2 to trade at $1274 per ounce, while oil was down $.17 to trade at $106.19 per barrel WTI.
I guess the surprise today was that there were no surprises. Frankly, I think some market participants were overthinking and overanalyzing the potential Fed actions today. Really, just more of the same.
Have a nice evening everyone.