US Stock Market Plunges Over Federal Reserve Monetary Policy

U.S. stocks ended lower after wobbling in a tight range on Tuesday as the central bankers of the U.S. Federal Reserve met for a two-day meeting to discuss the country’s monetary policy.

When the market closed, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 64.33 points, or 0.49 percent, to 13,008.64. The Standard & Poor’s 500 was down 5.98 points, or 0.43 percent, to 1,379.32. The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 6.32 points, or 0.21 percent, to 2,939.52.

For the month of July, the Dow gained 1 percent. The S&P 500 rose 1.3 percent during the month, while the Nasdaq edged up 0.15 percent.

The Federal Reserve started a two-day monetary policy meeting on Tuesday. Investors hoped it would launch further monetary easing policies in the face of the European debt crisis and economic slowdown.

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank (ECB) will announce its monetary policy decisions on Thursday. It is widely expected that the bank will resume its bond purchasing program after ECB President Mario Draghi pledged to save the euro last week.

On the economic front, the U.S. personal income rose 0.5 percent in June, beating previous expectations of a 0.2 percent increase, while consumer spending kept unchanged.

The Conference Board reported that the U.S. consumer confidence improved in July, after declining for four consecutive months.

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