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MarketWatch MarketPulseJan 29, 2020
Dow opens 200 points higher as coming Fed policy update and corporate earnings overshadows coronavirus spread
U.S. stock indexes opened solidly higher Wednesday morning as investors awaited a fresh update from the Federal Reserve and pushed concerns about a fast-moving Asian influenza to the back burner. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 208 points, or 0.7%, at 28,933, powered partially by solid earnings from the likes of Apple Inc. and Boeing Co. , which delivered their quarterly results within the past 24 hours. The S&P 500 index was up 15 points, or 0.5%, at 3,291, while the Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 47 points, or 0.5%, at 9,315. The rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee is set to issue a policy statement at 2 p.m., with a news conference from Fed Chairman Jerome Powell to follow a half-hour later. Investors aren't expecting any moves at key interest rates, which stand at a 1.50-1.75% range, but will be eager to here the central bank's outlook for the domestic economy and the potential impact of coronavirus. According to reports the novel coronavirus, which has drawn comparisons with SARS, severe acute respiratory syndrome, has claimed 132 lives, with more than 5,300 infected, according to some reports. The illness comes at a crucial holiday time for China, the Lunar New Year, and is expected to dent growth in the world's second-largest economy. In company news, shares of Boeing were higher even as the aeronautics and defense contractor swung to a loss of $2.33 per share, excluding non-recurring items, versus the FactSet consensus of $1.32 earnings per share, due to its problems with the 737 MAX jet. Apple Inc.'s shares, meanwhile, were headed higher after reporting better-than-expected results.

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