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US Futures Mixed Before Fed Announcement; Current Account Deficit Widens More Than Expected

U.S. futures were mixed before the open Wednesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 slightly lower and the Nasdaq being higher before the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee announcement this afternoon.

In its 2:00 p.m. E.T. announcement, the FOMC is expected to leave rates unchanged, according to data collected by Econoday. The Fed is also expected to shave off another $10 billion from its bond-buying program. The Fed will release quarterly forecasts at the same time and is expected to reduce its 2014 GDP growth outlook as the adverse weather took its toll on Q1 growth.

Meanwhile, this morning, the U.S. current account deficit widened to $111.2 billion in Q1 from a deficit of $87.3 billion in Q4 - revised from a deficit of $81.1 billion - and was much larger than the $99.8 billion deficit consensus estimate.

In equities, FedEx ( FDX ) rose nearly 4% before the market open on the back of fiscal Q4 earnings and sales that exceeded analysts expectations. If the gain holds, the stock will reach an all-time high in regular trading hours. ConAgra Foods ( CAG ) meanwhile was down more than 4% after it said fiscal 2014 EPS will be "below plan" and as it cut its EPS guidance amid a decline in consumer foods volumes.

U.S. PRE-MARKET INDICATORS

-Dow Jones Industrial down 0.03%

-S&P 500 futures down 0.02%

-Nasdaq 100 futures up 0.11%

-Nasdaq-100 Pre-Market Indicator up 0.19%

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

Nikkei up 0.93%

Hang Seng down 0.09%

Shanghai Composite down 0.43%

FTSE-100 up 0.31%

DAX-30 up 0.23%

PRE-MARKET SECTOR WATCH

(+/-) Large cap tech: mixed

(-) Chip stocks: unchanged to lower

(+/-) Software stocks: mixed

(+) Hardware stocks: unchanged to higher

(+) Internet stocks: higher

(+) Drug stocks: higher

(+) Financial stocks: unchanged to higher

(+) Retail stocks: unchanged to higher

(-) Industrial stocks: unchanged to lower

(-) Airlines: lower

(+/-) Autos: unchanged

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) INSM (+29.1%) Gets FDA breakthrough therapy status for lung disease treatment

(+) ADBE (+8.7%) Q2 exceeds views; sees cloud revenue grow 20% from 2013

(+) ETRM (+17.8%) Obesity therapy wins FDA advisory panel vote on safety

(+) BBRY (+5.1%) Makes Amazon appstore available on 10 smartphones

(+) NEWL (+23.9%) May seek damages from Ironridge; alleges it inappropriately sold shares

(+) MEET (+13.0%) Wunderlich initiates with buy rating, $4.50 PT

(+) CSCO (+1.1%) Canada finance minister, Cisco to announce investment initiative at 11 a.m.

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) ECYT (-14.5%) Merck drops development of co's vitafolide cancer drug

(-) NGL (-5.8%) Sells 8 million shares in public offering

(-) VRNG (-0.3%) ZTE files antitrust complaint against co with European Commission

(-) GDP (-7.7%) Nunnery well production results in lower target

(-) LZB (-10.2%) Q4 sales miss views

(-) ZBRA (-2.9%) Deltra Trust plans to sell $3.2 million of co's shares

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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