Wall St little changed ahead of Fed's policy meeting

Asia markets follow Wall St rally as eyes turn to Fed meeting

Asia markets follow Wall St rally as eyes turn to Fed meeting

The S&P 500 bank index gained more than 0.7 percent to its highest since early March, led by gains of more than 1 percent in a clutch of large regional lenders, including Suntrust Banks Inc, Zions Bancorp, PNC Financial Services, M&T Bank Corp and Regions Financial Corp.

In line with expectations, the Fed said it would begin in October to cut its roughly $US4.2 trillion in US Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities holdings by initially cutting up to $US10 billion each month from the amount of maturing securities it reinvests.

President Donald Trump gave his first address to the United Nations General Assembly, and at one point stated that the US was ready, willing and able to act against North Korea militarily, and that the USA would totally destroy the country if necessary. "They are looking forward to the Fed meeting", said Andre Bakhos, managing director of Janlyn Capital in Bernardsville, New Jersey. Asian markets moved tentatively today ahead of a Federal Reserve policy decision, while geopolitical issues returned after Donald Trump threatened to "totally destroy" North Korea if it threatened the USA or its allies. In 3.06pm trading, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index advanced 0.1 percent.

ASIA'S DAY: The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.3 percent to 3,362.86 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.3 percent to 28,159.77.

CENTRAL BANK WATCH: In Europe, investors are monitoring a speech by Bank of England Governor Mark Carney for confirmation that the bank expects to raise interest rates in coming months for the first time in a decade.

Deal-making and political turmoil in Spain livened up a flat session in Europe' stock markets as investors awaited pointers from the Federal Reserve on the U.S. interest rate outlook. The meeting might give for indications of an interest rate hike for the third time this year.

Investors will be closely watching the USA central bank as its policymakers deal with the fallout from hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which hammered the country and are expected to hit economic growth.

Interest rate futures traders are pricing in a 58 percent chance of a rate hike in that month, according to the CME Group's FedWatch Tool.

USA benchmark 10-year Treasury note yields rose as much as 2.29 percent, the highest since August 8., while two-year yields rose to the highest since November 2008. The dollar rose to 112.38 yen from 111.50 yen on Tuesday. On the Nasdaq, 1,248 issues rose and 977 fell.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 1.36-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.55-to-1 ratio favoured advancers.

Fears over North Korea receded soon after Friday's second missile test in a month.

Gold for December delivery edged down by 20 cents to settle at $1,310.60 an ounce.

Foreign exchanges were also seeing little movement before the U.S. central bank's meeting concludes, with the dollar essentially flat, although the Mexican peso was down 0.3 percent after a deadly quake killed scores in Mexico. Northrop's shares inched up 0.70 percent.

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