Fed Minutes Show Rate Hikes Slow, Indices Rise

US stocks on Wednesday Federal Reserve meeting minutes showed that the central bank intends to introduce smaller interest rate hikes in the coming months as inflation cools.

The Dow Jones Industrials rose 95.96 points to end Wednesday at 34,194.06.

The S&P 500 index increased by 23.68 points and reached 4,027.26 points.

The NASDAQ rose 110.91 points, or 1%, to 11,285.32.

Shares of Nordstrom fell 4.2% after the department store chain confirmed its forecast. However, according to Refinitiv consensus expectations, Nordstrom beat profit and sales expectations in its latest results. Tesla rose 7.8% after Citi upgraded the stock to neutral from sell. Deere rose more than 5% with earnings growth.

Minutes from the Fed’s November meeting showed the central bank is making progress in combating high inflation and trying to reduce the pace of interest rate hikes to smaller ones through the end of this year and 2023.

Jobless claims data for the week ended Nov. 19 came in at a higher-than-expected 240,000, with economists expecting 225,000, signaling that the labor market may be weakening. Meanwhile, durable goods orders for October were stronger than expected, up 0.5%, up 1%.

In early November, the central bank approved a fourth consecutive rate hike of 0.75 percentage points, taking it to the highest level since 2008. Economists are predicting a half-percent increase in December and a smaller rate increase next year.

Markets will be closed for the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday and close early on Friday.

10-year Treasury yields fell to 3.70% from 3.76% on Tuesday, gaining ground. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

One barrel of oil fell by $3.48 to $77.47.

The price of one ounce of gold increased by $10.60 to $1,750.50.