US STOCKS-S&P 500 widens losses, as Fed holds rates steady


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    * S&P extends losses, Dow goes negative after Fed decision
    * Bank stocks pare gains
    * Indexes down: Dow 0.15 pct, S&P 0.45 pct, Nasdaq 0.66 pct 

 (Updates to mid-afternoon, adds commentary changes byline, adds
New York dateline)
    By Sinéad Carew
    NEW YORK, Nov 8 (Reuters) - The S&P 500 extended its losses
slightly and the Dow turned negative on Thursday afternoon,
after the U.S. Federal Reserve said it was keeping interest
rates steady in a statement following its two-day meeting.  
    The U.S. central bank said that ongoing strong job gains and
household spending had kept the economy on track.*:nTLA8MEE46
    Aside from a comment that business investments had moderated
from earlier in the year, investors said that the statement was
largely as expected and suggested that the Fed's next rate hike
would be in December.
    "What the statement overall signals is that they're still on
track to raise rates. December is in the plan and they don't see
any reason to slow or stop the rate increases," said Brad
McMillan, Chief Investment Officer for Commonwealth Financial
Network, an independent broker-dealer in Waltham, Mass.
    "This is very much in line with what the market expected. I
see the market today walking back a little from the strong gains
yesterday. There's no real news in the statement."
    At 2:35PM ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average  .DJI  fell
48.62 points, or 0.19 percent, to 26,131.68, the S&P 500  .SPX 
lost 13.12 points, or 0.47 percent, to 2,800.77 and the Nasdaq
Composite  .IXIC  dropped 51.31 points, or 0.68 percent, to
    The S&P bank index  .SPXBK  erased its gains and turned
negative after the news as bank profits benefit from rising
    Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a
1.41-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.20-to-1 ratio favored decliners.
    The S&P 500 posted 33 new 52-week highs and 2 new lows; the
Nasdaq Composite recorded 70 new highs and 69 new lows.

 (Additional reporting by Lewis Krauskopf in New York, Sruthi
Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Chizu Nomiyama)
 ((; +1 (646) 223 6186; Reuters

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