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Stocks flat ahead of Fed announcement

September 13, 2012|By Andrew Tangel
  • John O'Hara, center, of Barclays works with other traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
John O'Hara, center, of Barclays works with other traders on the floor… (Henny Ray Abrams / Associated…)

Stocks barely budged in early trading Thursday on Wall Street.

But they will likely get a jolt later in the day when the Federal Reserve is expected to announce it will launch another round of monetary stimulus to boost the tepid U.S. recovery. Wall Street has been banking on a third round of bond-buying known as quantitative easing.

Major U.S. indexes were essentially flat. The Dow Jones industrial average was up ever so slightly at 13,337.

The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index fell about 1 point, or 0.1%, to 1,436. The Nasdaq was up slightly but basically steady at 3,115.

The Dow has been hovering around levels not seen since late 2007. Another round of Fed stimulus, known as QE3, may already be priced into stocks. So assuming, as many expect, the Fed embarks on another round of stimulus, how big a bump might equities get?

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