Investing.com -- U.S. stocks were falling on Tuesday, adding to losses for the month as investors worried about interest rates staying higher for longer and about the potential effects of a government shutdown.
Indices set for losing month on hawkish Fed
The main indices on Wall Street are still feeling reflecting investor reaction to last week’s surprisingly hawkish Federal Reserve meeting, with the policymakers signaling another rate increase this year and just two rate cuts next year, down from the four forecast at the June meeting. Officials sent the message that they believed interest rates would have to stay higher for longer to cool inflation toward their 2% target rate.
Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Neel Kashkari emphasized the point on Monday, staying that given the surprising resilience of the U.S. economy, the Fed probably needs to raise borrowing rates further and keep them high for some time to bring inflation back down to 2%.
But all of the indices are still on course to finish September sharply in the red, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite down 5.4% in September, heading for its worst month since December, while the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average had lost 3.8% and 2.1%, respectively.
Moody’s warns about shutdown damage
Also weighing on sentiment is the uncertainty surrounding a potential federal government shutdown, an occurrence that would harm the country's credit, rating agency Moody's (NYSE: MCO ) Investors Service said on Monday. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are trying to hammer out an agreement at least on a temporary funding measure that would buy them more time, but Saturday's deadline is quickly approaching.
The warning by Moody's comes just a month after Fitch downgraded the U.S. by one notch on the back of a debt ceiling crisis, meaning Moody’s is the last of the major agencies to still maintain the U.S. with the premier triple ‘A’ rating.
Alibaba to list logistics unit in Hong Kong
In corporate news, earnings are due from warehouse retailer Costco (NASDAQ: COST ) after the closing bell. Whole Foods distributor United Natural Foods (NYSE: UNFI ) beat profit expectations and reported revenue in-line with forecasts. Shares fell 21%.
Additionally, Alibaba (NYSE: BABA ) is set to list its logistics unit Cainiao on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, the Chinese e-commerce giant said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday.
Alibaba will continue to hold more than 50% of the shares of Cainiao after the spinoff.
Crude rebounds from losing week
Oil prices fell Tuesday as renewed stress in China’s property market raised concerns about economic growth this year in the world’s largest crude importer.
Embattled developer China Evergrande (HK: 3333 ) Group warned earlier this week that it was unable to issue new debt, putting the focus firmly on the release of key Chinese purchasing managers’ index data for September later in the week.
(Oliver Gray contributed to this item.)
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