U.S. stocks are falling as debt ceiling talks drag on

·2 min read

Investing.com -- U.S. stocks were falling as the debt ceiling talks dragged on with no solution in sight.

At 11:49 ET (15:49 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 257 points or 0.8%, while the S&P 500 was down 0.8% and the NASDAQ Composite was down 0.9%.

Investors have been hoping for a resolution to the debt ceiling standoff in Washington, with an early June deadline just days away. If Congress doesn’t raise or suspend the ceiling, the government risks the possibility of defaulting on its obligations, something economists and Biden administration officials have warned could cause chaos in financial markets.

Democrats and Republicans are trying to hammer out details on spending levels as part of reaching an agreement, though the sides still appear far apart as of Wednesday morning.

At the same time, investors are looking to the release of the Federal Reserve’s meeting minutes from its last policy session, when it raised rates another quarter of a percentage point. Since then, officials have indicated a pause may be in order in June as they assess the progress of their actions so far to cool inflation.

One key data input will be Friday’s report on personal consumption expenditures, a measure of inflation closely watched by the Fed as it makes its monetary policy.

Uncertainty is raising the level of volatility in markets, with the CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX, up 10.9% on Wednesday, to just over 20.

Citigroup Inc. (NYSE:C) stock fell 3% after the bank said it would spin off its operations in Mexico in an initial public offering after trying to find a buyer for it.

Kohl’s Corp. (NYSE:KSS) shares jumped 6.7% after the department store operator reported better-than-expected quarterly results, including a surprise profit.

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