24/7 Wall St. Closing Bell — August 1, 2012: Markets Lose Small Gains after FOMC Minutes

24/7 Wall St.

The three major US stock indexes opened higher this morning as markets were getting primed for the afternoon’s statement from the FOMC. Tomorrow’s announcement on interest rates from the European Central Bank now takes center stage. China’s PMI report came in weaker than expected (our report here), but Asian markets finished higher, probably hoping that the weaker PMI would lead to more Chinese government stimulus. US and European PMI readings were mixed, with the Eurozone revised up, while both Germany and France posted downward revisions (more coverage here). When the FOMC minutes were finally released, markets responded by dropping sharply on the lack of stronger hints for more stimulus (our coverage here).

The US dollar index rose today, now up 0.46% at 83.013. The GSCI commodity index fell by about -1.3% to 635.82, with commodities prices mostly lower again today. WTI crude oil rose 1% today, closing…

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