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The Federal Reserve extends taper and stocks slide lower

Hot Stock Minute

Stocks slide lower as the Fed extends its taper program. In Ben Bernanke's final meeting as Fed Chair, the FOMC tapered its bond buying by $10 billion. Stocks extended their early slide as global turmoil roiled stocks earlier in the day

The Dow Industrials (^DJI) ended up down nearly 1.2%, pushing the benchmark index down 5% for the year. The Nasdaq (^IXIC) lost 1.1%, while the S&P 500 (^GSPC) slid 1% for the day.

Investors also focused on emerging markets. Central banks in Turkey and South Africa raised interest rates in an effort to calm currency markets. The effort in Turkey was initially successful, sparking a huge rally in the Turkish lira overnight, but the rally quickly evaporated. A similar situation unfolded in South Africa’s currency market. The losses were based on rising concerns that monetary policy moves will not be enough to prevent a massive withdrawal of investment in emerging economies.

In this country, bellwether earnings reports before the bell did little to boost stocks. Boeing (BA) beat earnings and revenue estimates handily, but warned full-year earnings and revenue estimates will come in below analysts’ expectations.

Dow Chemical (DOW) fared better. The company reported earnings that beat estimates by $0.22 a share and revenue that rose 3%, also above estimates. The company also increased its dividend 15% to $0.37 a share and expanded its share-repurchase program by $3 billion to $4.5 billion.

After the bell, Facebook (FB) is scheduled to report earnings. The company is expected to earn $0.27 a share. Analysts project profits and revenue to rise from last year. Investors are eager to hear what the company has to say about teen-user growth as well as the company's plans for video ads and Instagram.