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GLOBAL MARKETS-Fed minutes send stocks higher; Brent falls
July 9, 2014 / 7:20 PM / 3 years ago

GLOBAL MARKETS-Fed minutes send stocks higher; Brent falls

* Brent at 1-month low as Libyan supply returns; WTI falls
the most since late May
    * Fed minutes seen as confirmation of strong U.S. economy
    * Euro edges up versus U.S. dollar

 (Updates prices, comments; adds Fed minutes, Draghi speech)
    By Rodrigo Campos
    NEW YORK, July 9 (Reuters) - Wall Street stocks rose on
Wednesday, lifting a global equities gauge as the Federal
Reserve detailed its plan to allow a strengthening economy to
fend for itself, while Brent fell as Libyan oil pumps came back
    Minutes from the most recent Fed meeting showed the U.S.
central bank has begun detailing plans to ease the world's
largest economy out of an era of loose monetary policy, while
its asset purchases will likely end in October. 
    Stocks on Wall Street traded higher after the release of the
minutes, erasing about half the losses sustained in the previous
two sessions.
    "The market, after digesting the Fed minutes, came to the
conclusion that the bond-buying program ending in October is a
sign of economic strength," said Peter Cardillo, chief market
economist at Rockwell Global Capital in New York.
    "So while it was a bit more hawkish, the conclusion is the
economy doesn't need any more crutches."  
    The Dow Jones industrial average rose 78.1 points or
0.46 percent, to 16,984.72, the S&P 500 gained 8.56
points or 0.44 percent, to 1,972.27 and the Nasdaq Composite
 added 25.72 points or 0.59 percent, to 4,417.18.
    The FTSEuroFirst 300 index of leading European shares was
flat on the day and MSCI's global gauge of stocks
 edged up 0.2 percent.
    European Central Bank President Mario Draghi's London speech
didn't alter markets much, as he reiterated his message that the
ECB is ready to use "unconventional instruments" if needed to
support growth. 
    Brent crude oil hit a one-month low near $108 a barrel after
a Libyan oilfield restarted and supply worries faded, while
weekly data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration
showed U.S. crude stockpiles rose and gasoline demand faltered.
    "Gasoline demand didn't grow as expected and that
disappointment is showing in the negative reaction," said Phil
Flynn, analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago.
    Brent fell 0.6 percent to $108.29 and U.S. crude
 lost 1.2 percent, the most since late May, to $102.18.
    The U.S. dollar fell 0.2 percent against a basket of
currencies and the euro strengthened 0.2 percent versus
the greenback.
    Regarding the Fed minutes, any discussion by Fed members
about a recent uptick in U.S. consumer prices will be key after
Fed Chair Janet Yellen downplayed heating inflation data after
the June meeting as being "noisy." 
    "The characterization by Fed Chair Yellen of the inflation
pop-up as noise really took the wind out of the sails of the
near-term hawks," said Steven Englander, global head of G10
foreign exchange strategy at CitiFX in New York.
    The benchmark 10-year Treasury note yield was
down slightly at 2.546 percent after the Fed minutes.
    Upbeat U.S. employment data last week prompted some
economists to predict the Fed would raise interest rates earlier
than previously thought, but yields have since fallen.
    Gold was up 0.7 percent at $1,328.20 an ounce.

 (Additional reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak, Karen Brettell,
Anna Louie Sussman and Richard Leong; Editing by James Dalgleish
and Meredith Mazzilli)

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