Stocks Ended Lower after Fed Minutes

U.S. stocks ended lower on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve failed to deliver a firmer read on additional stimulus. The Dow Jones industrial average declined 48.59 points, or 0.38 percent, to end at 12,604.53. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index inched down just 0.02 of a point to finish at 1,341.45. The Nasdaq Composite Index shed 14.35 points, or 0.49 percent, to close at 2,887.98.

Only a few officials thought that more asset purchases would be necessary at the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting in June, according to the minutes released on Wednesday that drove U.S. stocks lower. Fed officials generally agreed that economic growth would remain moderate over coming quarters and then pick up very gradually.

Crude-oil futures ended higher Wednesday after a U.S. supply report showed a bigger-than-expected decline in crude supplies. Crude for August delivery  added $1.23, or 1.5%, to $85.14 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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