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Stocks - Wall Street Rises Ahead of Fed Decision

Investing.com – Wall Street surged on Tuesday as the Federal Reserve begins its two-day policy meeting, with investors confident of some accommodating conclusions from the central bank later in the week.

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) will make a decision Wednesday on interest rates and is all but certain to keep rates unchanged.

Of more interest will be the Fed’s updated forecasts for economic growth, known as the dot-plot. Weak economic data this month have increased expectations that the central bank's top management will revise down their ideas of how many more rate hikes will be needed in the current cycle.

The Dow rose 129 points or 0.5% by 9:41 AM ET (13:41 GMT) while the S&P 500 gained 10 points or 0.4% and tech-heavy Nasdaq composite was up 23 points or 0.3%.

Banking stocks were among the top gainers after the morning bell, with JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) jumping 1% and Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) gaining 1.3%.

Semiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD) surged 3%, while Micron (NASDAQ:MU) was up 1.7% and Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) rose 1.1%.

Michaels Companies (NASDAQ:MIK) skyrocketed 6.4% after the arts and crafts retailer posted higher-than-expected earnings and FedEx (NYSE:FDX) inched up 1.3% ahead of its earnings release after the close.

Elsewhere, Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) fell 1.9% after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission told a judge on Monday that CEO Elon Musk never sought pre-approval for his tweets about the company, violating his fraud settlement with the agency.

In commodities, gold futures rose 0.6% to $1,309.55 a troy ounce while crude oil was up 0.3% to $59.56 a barrel, close to another new high for the year. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, dropped 0.2% to 95.822.

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