George Noorey

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George Noorey

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It's not the meeting we've all been waiting for, but the Fed's policy-making committee convenes in Washington today and tomorrow, where it's expected to keep benchmark interest rates near zero. The real question is whether the Fed will raise rates at its next gathering in December. Officials may provide some hints to that answer in tomorrow's post-meeting statement by signaling a change in stance to recent soft U.S. economic data and events in the global markets.

2 data reports this morning should also give some sense of the American economy's momentum for the fall, especially given headwinds from Asia and recent wobbles on Wall Street. First will be government data on durable goods orders for September, followed by a report on October's consumer confidence from the Conference Board. Traders are also eyeing upcoming earnings reports from several heavy hitters, including Ford, Alibaba, Apple, and Twitter

The White House and congressional leaders have reached a tentative deal on a two-year budget plan that would suspend the debt limit through mid-March 2017 and boost spending by $80B through September 2017. Those increases would be offset by cuts in spending on Medicare and Social Security disability benefits, and savings and revenue from other programs. The agreement could be voted on by the House as soon as tomorrow.

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