U.S. stocks: Futures flatten as Fed day arrives

Madrid-Spain (Sept 17)   U.S. stock market futures stuck to the flat line on Wednesday, as lingering nervousness over the conclusion of the Federal Open Market Committee meeting was balanced by news that China’s central bank has flooded its lenders with liquidity.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average US:DJZ4  rose 7 points to 17,061, while those for the S&P 500 index SPZ4, -0.02%  inched up 0.4 point to 1,991.90. Futures for the Nasdaq-100 index NDZ4, -0.08%  slipped 2.25 points to 4,056.

At 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time, data on consumer prices for August will be released, with economists expecting no change. The current-account deficit for the second quarter will come at the same time, while at 10 a.m. Eastern Time, a home builders’ index is on tap.

Goldman Sachs’ slant on the Fed

Macro analyst Francesco Garzarelli lays out why the Fed is unlikely to shift its tone in September and why the dollar’s rally makes perfect sense.

But the big spotlight falls on the FOMC statement, due at 2 p.m. Eastern Time, followed by a news conference with Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen. Some calm over rate hikes helped push the Dow industrials DJIA, +0.59%  to an intraday record high on Tuesday, and the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.75%  to its biggest one-day gain in four weeks.

Those gains came after Jon Hilsenrath, chief economic correspondent at The Wall Street Journal, said in a webcast that he thinks the Fed may keep the words “considerable time” in its policy statement, but with clarification. He added that the Fed probably doesn’t want to send a signal right now that rate hikes are imminent. Eight keys to Fed’s September meeting and Fed’s exit plan may be a bumpy ride for investors

If the “considerable time” phrase sticks, the market will be left as complacent on interest rates as it was two weeks ago, said Chris Beauchamp, market analyst at IG, in a note. However, “it will mean that equity indexes should recover some of the upward momentum that has been lacking in recent sessions,” he added. Need to Know: Two aging techs may be getting whipped back into 1990s shape

Hong Kong HSI, +1.00%  stocks broke a five-session losing streak after a senior Chinese banking executive said the People’s Bank of China is injecting 500 billion yuan ($81 billion) into the country’s five big state-owned banks to help counter an economic slowdown. A string of recent weak data has heightened worries among investors.

Source: MarketWatch