US STOCKS-Wall St retreats after Fed-fueled rally; energy falls

jueves 19 de marzo de 2015 09:53 GYT

* Fed removes 'patient' but cuts economic projections

* Lennar, Guess post strong quarterly earnings

* Indexes: Dow off 0.38 pct, S&P off 0.3 pct, Nasdaq up 0.15 pct (Updates to market open)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, March 19 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks opened modestly lower on Thursday in the wake of a rally in the prior session after the Federal Reserve cut economic growth and inflation projections and indicated it was in no rush to hike interest rates.

U.S. stocks had rallied more than 1 percent on Wednesday as investors, who had sold equities ahead of the meeting, were relieved by Fed Chair Janet Yellen's dovish outlook.

But investors will now seek signs of improvement in the U.S. economy after Yellen "removed the word 'patient' but underscored the need for patience", said Peter Kenny, chief market strategist at Clearpool Group in New York.

"Yesterday's rally has all the appearances of being a one-day pop," he said. "She's basically told markets it's later rather than sooner. That provides some buoyancy for the markets, but it's going to take significantly more than that for the markets to move higher. Better economic data would be a very important component."

Weekly initial jobless claims showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose only modestly last week, indicating the labor market remained on solid footing. The U.S. current account deficit widened sharply in the fourth quarter and was the largest since 2012, as a stronger dollar dented exports.   Continuación...