Wall Street falls 1st time since start of week as fed minutes stir debate on rates

US stocks closed lower on Wednesday, with indexes volatile after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s meeting in July suggested policymakers may be less aggressive than previously thought when they raise interest rates in September.

Major indexes sharply cut their losses after the release of the minutes, with the Dow briefly turning positive, before they returned to earlier lower levels, Reuters reports.

Weak results from Target weighed on the market for much of the session, along with megacap growth shares including Amazon.com Amazon.com ended down 1.9%.

The Fed minutes also showed policymakers committed to raising rates as high as necessary to bring inflation under control.

The Fed has lifted its benchmark overnight interest rate by 225 points this year to a target range of 2.25% to 2.50%. After the release of the minutes, traders of futures tied to the Fed’s policy rate saw a half-percentage-point rate hike as more likely in September.

“They stayed hawkish, but they also opened the door perhaps for a half of a percentage point hike in September as opposed to 75,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York.

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