U.S. stocks ended modestly higher Wednesday after the Federal Reserve left their benchmark interest rate unchanged at a range between 2.25% and 2.50%, but opened the door to rate cuts later this year.
The S&P 500 was up 0.3% to end around 2,926. The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 29 points, or 0.1%, to finish near 26,504, based on preliminary numbers. The Nasdaq Composite was up 0.4% to finish around 7,987. The U.S. central bank took out the phrase "patience" from its policy statement, and said it stood ready to act appropriately if risks to the economic outlook reared their head. The Fed's interest-rate projections also showed close to half the members of the central bank's policy-making group anticipated two rate cuts this year.
The 10-year Treasury note yield fell to 2.02%, its lowest since Nov. 8 2016. In company news, shares of CBS were up 1% after news reports said the media giant was readying an offer to buy Viacom Inc.