U.S. Futures Slightly Higher Ahead Of Fed Policy Decision

  1. U.S. stock futures point to higher open

U.S. stock futures ticked lower on Wednesday morning as investors awaited the latest policy decision by the Federal Reserve. At around 6:50 EDT, futures on the blue-chip Dow indicated a loss of 3.5 points, or around 0.01% to 25,902.5.

Futures on the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 fell 1.38 points, or about 0.02% to 7,375.12, while those on the S&P 500 were down 1.12 points, or roughly 0.04%, at 2,835.38.

  1. Fed decision day

The U.S. central bank’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) monetary policy decision is due to be made public later today. Market participants will be watching keenly to see whether the Fed will downgrade its 2019 economic forecast, in the face of slowing domestic and global growth.

Based on recent speeches, policy makers expect 0 or 1 more hike this year, down from their December forecast of 2 hikes. The speeches also suggest that the officials expect to cut the range for the neutral rate from the 2.5-3.5% set in December, to 2.50-2.75%.

  1. Google announces Stadia video game service

Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) on Tuesday announced that it is launching a cloud gaming service known as Stadia. The service will allow users to stream video games from their cloud via Pixel devices, Chrome browser, and Chromecast.

Google-parent Alphabet Inc plans to launch Stadia this year, powered by custom AMD chips. Alphabet shares were down slightly in pre-market trade on Wednesday.

  1. A big miss for FedEx

Global-delivery giant FedEx (NYSE: FDX) on Tuesday cut its 2019 earnings guidance for the second straight quarter. Third-quarter financial results of the Memphis, Tennessee-based company also fell short of Wall Street’s estimates. FedEx also saw revenue in its express segment decline during the quarter due to unfavorable exchange rates and lower yields.

Profit in its ground unit also fell, driven by higher cost of the six-day-per-week operations that the company launched in January. Shares of FedEx were down $12.01, or 6.62% in premarket trading session.