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NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks edged higher in morning trading Wednesday as investors waited for a Federal Reserve statement on interest rates following a two-day meeting. Shares of DuPont and FedEx surged.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose one point, or less than 0.1 percent, to 2,000 as of 11:45 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 16 points, or 0.1 percent, to 17,148, above its all-time closing high of 17,138.20 set July 16. The Nasdaq composite rose five points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,557.

FED WATCH: Investors will be looking to see if the Fed statement keeps the phrase "considerable time," referring to how long it will wait before raising interest rates. The Fed has held the short-term rates it controls close to zero for more than five years, which has helped stimulate the economy and fueled a bull market for stocks. The Fed releases its statement at 2 p.m. Eastern time Wednesday.

INFLATION WATCH: U.S. consumer prices edged down in August, the first monthly drop since the spring of 2013, as gasoline, airline tickets and clothing prices all fell. It was the latest evidence that inflation remains under control and was taken as a signal by some that the Fed is unlikely to raise rates soon. In a note to investors, PNC Financial Group said the inflation figures suggest the first Fed rate hike won't come until July 2015.

DUPONT JUMPS: DuPont jumped 4 percent on news that activist investor Nelson Peltz had sent a letter to the company's board Tuesday suggesting it split in two. His Trian Fund Management LP says it has been in private talks with DuPont for more than a year to boost shareholder value and improve its financial performance. DuPont rose $2.79 to $68.62.

FEDEX SURGE: FedEx rose $4.94, or 3 percent, to $159.60 after reporting fiscal first-quarter net income climbed 24 percent, beating forecasts by financial analysts. The company got a boost from an increase in shipments to people buying online.

GENERAL MILLS DROPS: General Mills, the food company behind Cheerios cereal and Yoplait yogurt, fell $1.89, or 3.6 percent, to $51.29 after reporting disappointing fiscal first-quarter results.

CHINA BANKS: Investors were cheered by news reports that China's central bank will inject a total of 500 billion yuan ($81 billion) into the five biggest state banks over three months. Additional financial system liquidity would build on targeted measures to shore up growth, amid a bout of weak economic data. There was no official confirmation of the reports.

THE QUOTE: Chinese support for banks, if confirmed "is likely to snap Asian equities out of their Fed-induced slumber," said Evan Lucas, market strategist with IG in Australia. "However I again reiterate that the Fed is still the main driving force in the market currently."

RUSSIAN CHILL: Moscow's stocks sank amid fears that the government there might start cracking down on large companies in a way it hasn't done for over a decade. The house arrest of tycoon Vladimir Yevtushenkov saw shares in his holding company, Sistema, collapse 36 percent. The wider MICEX index was down 1.9 percent. Business experts fear the arrest is politically motivated and echoes the 2003 case against Yukos. The oil company was broken up and taken over by the state after its CEO was imprisoned.

EUROPEAN STOCKS: France's CAC 40 was up 0.6 percent and Germany's DAX added 0.4 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 was down 0.1 percent.

ASIA'S DAY: Tokyo's Nikkei 225 fell 0.1 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 1 percent. China's Shanghai Composite added 0.5 percent and Seoul's Kospi gained 1 percent. Markets in Taiwan, India and Southeast Asia were higher.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 58 cents to $94.30 a barrel in New York. It rose $1.96 to close at $94.88 a barrel on Tuesday.

BOND TRADING: Government bonds rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.58 percent from 2.59 percent on Tuesday. It has risen as high as 3 percent this, and as low as 2.34 percent.



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