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Looking ahead the AUD USD exchange rate may advance on Tuesday as the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) publishes the minutes from its September policy meeting.

Wall Street stocks edged up to fresh records on Tuesday (Sep 19) as the bull market marched onwards following solid economic data while the Federal Reserve opened a two-day policy meeting.

Another rate hike is unlikely this time around as the disruptions caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have distorted the overall picture of the U.S. economy (witness the spike in initial jobless claims in what has been an otherwise uninterrupted downtrend).

The US dollar jumped against most other major currencies as the Federal Reserve announced start of balance sheet reduction from October. She called this year's inflation undershoot a "mystery". Australia's S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.1 per cent to 5,709.10.

"What we need to do is figure out whether or not the factors that have lowered inflation are likely to prove persistent or they're likely to prove transitory", she said. However, they are of the opinion that the storms would weigh on the economy only for a short span.

The Fed's preferred measure of price inflation increased by just 1.4 percent during the 12 months ending in July, the most recent available data. Benchmark 10-year notes last fell 2/32 in price to yield 2.2375 percent, from 2.23 percent late on Monday. The contract rose 93 cents, or 1.9 percent, to settle at $50.41 a barrel on Wednesday.

In its statement, the Fed pointed to the strength of job growth and to increases in household and business spending. It added that the near-term risks to the economic outlook remained "roughly balanced" but that inflation was being watched "closely". But the Fed's goal of normalizing monetary policy after years of "easy money" has been complicated by uneven economic growth.

The administration promised a 3 percent growth rate, and during the second quarter of 2017 (Trump's first full quarter as president), the economy grew at a 2.6 percent rate.

The Fed's decision to exit from balance sheet policies comes a decade after the global financial crisis began to tip the economy into a recession at the end of 2007. "So there's a little adjustment going on there", said David Joy, chief market strategist at Ameriprise Financial in Boston.

"We could get some volatility tomorrow afternoon if the statement is considerably different from what we're expecting", said Thomas Wright, director of equities at JMP Securities.

The plan starting next month will gradually reduce the size of the Fed's $4.5 trillion in investment holdings, which were built up during the financial crisis. The Fed anticipates ending the runoff at some point, though it doesn't yet have a specific date. But Fed officials hinted that they may raise rates one more time by year-end if inflation rises.

Tech giant Samsung Electronics mainly led the increases, rising as much as 4.1 percent to ₩2,624,000, amid positive expectations over the growing prices of semiconductors.

The tax reform bill, which is set for discussion later this week, is meant to provide revenue for a multi-billion dollar infrastructure program for the government's economic plan.

There is uncertainty about the pace of interest rate increases over the next year, analysts say, based on the potential impact of US politics and economic data.


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