Stocks Closed Sharply Lower on Confusion Over Fed

U.S. stocks closed sharply lower on Friday as investors weighed concerns over the implications of the Federal Reserve’s decision to keep short-term interest rates unchanged. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 289.95 points, or 1.74%, to 16,384.79 and booked a 0.3% loss over the week. The S&P 500 fell 32.12 points, or 1.61%, to 1,958.08 and ended the week 0.2% lower.  The Nasdaq Composite was down 66.72 points, or 1.36%, to 4,827.23, but eked out a 0.1% gain for the week.

Household wealth in the U.S. climbed in the second quarter, a sign consumers will help growth in the world’s largest economy. Net worth for households and non-profit groups increased by $694.8 billion from April through June, or 0.8 percent from the previous three months, to $85.7 trillion, the Federal Reserve said Friday.

Oil futures on Friday saw their largest daily drop in almost three weeks. October West Texas Intermediate crude settled at $44.68 a barrel, down $2.22, or 4.7%, on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Comcast Corp. has agreed to pay $33 million and overhaul its operations to resolve allegations that it illegally posted online personal information of customers who had paid for unlisted service.

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