The Russell 2000 and the Nasdaq Composite are in the most significant pullbacks since January's emerging-market dive.
The central bank will announce its plans on bond buying on this afternoon. The question is how investors will react.
Apple pushes the Nasdaq and Nasdaq-100 to 13-year highs, and the Dow jumps 141, its best day since mid-July, thanks to gains from Caterpillar, 3M and IBM.
The Dow falls nearly 4.5% for the month as stocks suffer modest losses. September, historically a tough month, looms. Markets are closed Monday for Labor Day.
Low-trading volumes may minimize big market moves in the days to come. But September and its volatile history are still ahead.
But the market is beginning to look overbought as oil prices and interest rates are on the move again. Google, Apple and Facebook boost the Nasdaq.
The central bank will describe its plans for the next few months on Wednesday. The odds favor a bland announcement, which should cheer investors.
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The company is scrambling to protect its equities arm, which could face declining volume and revenue as competitors close the gap.
The Market Dispatches column has been discontinued. Here's where to find the latest stock and business news on MSN Money, and the latest from market writer Charley Blaine.
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Breaking up big banks is an untested solution to the too big to fail problem that attempts to isolate and dismantle large, troubled institutions while protecting the rest of the economy.
Casual dining restaurant chains have jumped on the happy hour train with deals on drinks and snacks -- maybe enough for dinner.
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