Today's Fed decision at center stage


Today's economic calendar includes weekly mortgage data and oil inventories, but the market will be intently focused on Fed announcements this afternoon.

The day begins with weekly MBA mortgage-purchase applications at 7 a.m. ET. There are no estimates for this report, which showed an increase of 18 percent in the previous reading.

The weekly EIA petroleum inventory figures are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. ET. The previous level showed a draw of -191,000 barrels.

The Federal Open Market Committee will announce its rate decision at 12:30 p.m. ET, followed by its quarterly forecast at 2 p.m. ET. Analysts are expecting rates to remain unchanged, with estimates ranging from zero to 0.25 percent.

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will hold a press conference at 2:15 p.m. ET.

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