NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks and the dollar rose on Wednesday ahead of three key central bank announcements after data showed the U.S. economy grew faster than expected in the second quarter
But investors remained cautious ahead of the potentially game-changing central bank policy decisions. A Federal Reserve statement on Wednesday will be scoured for clues on when the U.S. central bank will curb its bond-buying stimulus program that has supported global markets.
On Thursday, attention will switch to European Central Bank and Bank of England policy meetings and data on global manufacturing activity, followed by the always keenly awaited U.S. employment report on Friday.
U.S. economic growth, as measured by gross domestic product, unexpectedly accelerated in the second quarter by 1.7 percent at an annual rate, the government said. Economists had expected a 1.0 percent gain.
In addition, private employers added 200,000 jobs in July, according to the ADP National Employment Report, topping economists’ expectations and laying a firmer foundation for the rest of the year that could bring the Fed closer to cutting back its stimulus.
“We have an upside surprise in the GDP which speaks volumes for the job recovery that we’re putting together,” said Andre Bakhos, director of market analytics at Lek Securities in New York. “The recovery in the economy is starting to take root. This will be an interesting development given the fact that we’ll have a Fed announcement today, and it will play into how Wall Street perceives the Fed’s tapering plans.”
The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI was up 45.31 points, or 0.29 percent, at 15,565.90. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX was up 5.47 points, or 0.32 percent, at 1,691.43. The Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC was up 14.92 points, or 0.41 percent, at 3,631.39.
The dollar was up 0.2 percent against the yen while the euro was down 0.2 percent against the dollar.
Reporting by Nick Olivari; Editing by James Dalgleish