Stocks fall after Fed says US still needs support

NEW YORK (AP) — The stock market is pulling back from all-time highs after the Federal Reserve said the U.S. economy still needs help from its stimulus program.

The Fed said the economy is expanding, but only moderately. It also said the housing recovery is slowing down, which sent homebuilder stocks lower. The central bank will keep up its $85 billion in monthly bond purchases to keep interest rates low and encourage hiring and investment.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 61 points, or 0.4 percent, to close at 15,618 Wednesday. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell eight points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,763. The Dow and S&P 500 closed at record highs Tuesday.

The Nasdaq fell 21 points, or 0.6 percent, to 3,930. Hess, Western Union and Aflac fell after reporting lower earnings.

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