Major US stock indexes ended slightly lower on Wall Street Wednesday after the Federal Reserve left its key interest rate unchanged near zero, even as it noted recent improvement in the economy. Investors were also dealing with a wave of earnings reports from major U.S. companies and looking ahead to an evening speech from President Joe Biden to lay out his $1.8 trillion spending plan, the AP reports. Bond yields held steady. The S&P 500 fell 3.54 points, or 0.1%, to 4,183.18. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 164.55 points, or less than 0.5%, to 33,820.38. The Nasdaq fell 39.19 points, or 0.3%, to 14,051.03.
The central bank, which issued the policy update at 2pm. Eastern after a two-day meeting of its policymakers, said the economy and job market have "strengthened." The Fed acknowledged that inflation has risen, but that it sees the increase as transitory. Google's parent company, Alphabet, rose 3.8% after the company reported its profits doubled from a year earlier, helped by a surge of digital advertising revenue as more Americans shopped online during the pandemic. Google's solid gains helped send communications stocks higher. Spotify, however, sank 11.5% after the music streaming company announced that subscriber growth had slowed more than expected.
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