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Stocks Slip Ahead of Fed, Jam-Packed Earnings Week

Stocks opened slightly lower on Monday morning ahead of a Federal Reserve announcement on interest rates on Wednesday.

The S&P 500 was down 0.18%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.17%, and the Nasdaq declined 0.31%.

The central bank will meet on Tuesday with an announcement set for Wednesday afternoon and while the chances of an interest rate hike are slim, investors will be keen to gauge how willing members are to move at the next meeting in June.

"While we assign a low probability of a rate hike, sentiment may be impacted by Fed comments about the strength of economic health and implied likelihood of a June rate hike," said Terry Sandven, chief equity strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.

Fed funds futures only price in a rate hike with odds greater than 50% in November, nearly a year after December 2015's initial liftoff, according to CME Group. The chance of an April rate hike is currently priced in at 2%, while a June hike has a 17% probability. September has a 47% chance.

It's also a massive week for earnings with Apple (AAPL - Get Report) ...


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