US stocks fall on Fed rate hike uncertainties

New York, Sep 28 (IANS) US stocks traded lower in the morning session on Monday, as uncertainties about the timing of interest rate hike still weighed on investors sentiment.

At midday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 216.87 points, or 1.33 percent, to 16,097.80. The S&P 500 lost 33.10 points, or 1.71 percent, to 1,898.24. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 92. 81 points, or 1.98 percent, to 4,593.69, Xinhua news agency reported.

New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley said on Monday the Fed remains on track for a likely rate hike this year.

Traders were also keeping a close eye on a speech from Chicago Fed President Charles Evans later in the day.

On Thursday, Federal Chair Janet Yellen said she anticipated a rate hike in the coming months.

“Most FOMC participants, including myself, currently anticipate that achieving these conditions will likely entail an initial increase in the federal funds rate later this year, followed by a gradual pace of tightening thereafter,” she said at the University of Massachusetts.

On the economic front, the US Commerce Department said on Monday that US personal income in August increased 0.3 percent and personal consumption expenditures rose 0.4 percent.

Analysts said the better-than-expected increase in consumer spending in August added to the case for an interest rate hike this year.

The US stocks pared early gains to finish mixed Friday, as investors digested Yellen’s speech and the second revision of the US gross domestic product (GDP) data for the second quarter.

The US real GDP increased at an annual rate of 3.9 percent in the second quarter of 2015, according to the “third” estimate released by the US Commerce Department on Friday.

The revised-up GDP data was mainly boosted by stronger consumer spending and construction.

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