BANGKOK (AP) - Asian stock markets struggled to find their footing today as traders hesitated to make bold moves before the Federal Reserve winds up a crucial policy meeting later in the day.
The Fed is widely expected to announce a reduction in its massive bond-buying program, launched after the 2008 financial crisis to boost the flailing U.S. economy.
Stock markets are hoping for a small reduction because the bond-buying has kept interest rates super-low, making it cheaper to borrow money. The low bond yields and flood of money led investors to plow into stock markets, fueling rallies across the globe.
But U.S. central bank officials have increasingly voiced a desire to scale back the program in light of data showing a slow but steady improvement in the U.S. economy.
Benchmark crude oil rose to remain above $105 per barrel. The dollar fell against the euro and the yen.