Banks, lenders and other financial companies edged higher after the Federal Reserve left short-term interest rates unchanged but signaled it would consider lifting them before year's end amid signs the economy is gaining momentum.
Officials have penciled in one more move for 2017 if the economy stays on track. The Fed has one more meeting scheduled before the end of the year, in December. The central bank has raised its benchmark federal-funds rate four times since late 2015, in quarter-percentage-point steps, to a current range between 1% and 1.25%. In its statement Wednesday, the Fed said, "Economic activity has been rising at a solid rate despite hurricane-related disruptions."
In corporate news, Standard Chartered results missed analyst expectations, and the bank reported a series of drags on its turnaround plan.
Private-equity firm Permira said it will buy corporate finance adviser Duff & Phelps for $1.75 billion from a group that includes Carlyle Group.
Apollo Global Management's profit more than doubled in its latest quarter, driven by investment gains and a significant increase in carried interest income.
-By Amy Pessetto, email@example.com