US stocks rise modestly as investors digest Fed minutes

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NEW YORK, July 6 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks eked out modest gains on Wednesday as investors parsed the Federal Reserve's latest meeting minutes.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 69.86 points, or 0.23 percent, to 31,037.68. The S&P 500 increased 13.69 points, or 0.36 percent, to 3,845.08. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 39.61 points, or 0.35 percent, to 11,361.85.

Eight of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in green, with utilities and technology up 1.01 percent and 0.88 percent, respectively, outpacing the rest. Energy slipped 1.74 percent, the worst-performing group.

The above market reactions came after the Fed's June meeting minutes released on Wednesday revealed the central bank increasingly worried about inflation and inflation expectations.

With surging inflation showing no signs of abating, another interest rate increase of 50 or 75 basis points is likely at the upcoming meeting in July, according to the filing.

Meanwhile, Fed policymakers "recognized the possibility that an even more restrictive stance could be appropriate if elevated inflation pressures were to persist," said the minutes.

In June, the U.S. central bank delivered a 75 basis point rate hike, the biggest increase since 1994, in an effort to stifle rampant inflation.

On the economic front, the Institute for Supply Management reported on Wednesday that U.S. Services PMI (Purchasing Managers's Index) fell to 55.3 percent in June from the May print of 55.9 percent, marking the lowest reading since May 2020.