US STOCKS-Wall St dips as healthcare lags before Fed statement

martes 15 de marzo de 2016 16:30 GYT

* Healthcare biggest drag on S&P 500

* Valeant down after cutting revenue forecast

* Feb retail sales fall less than expected

* Dow up 0.13 pct, S&P down 0.18 pct, Nasdaq down 0.45 pct (Updates to close)

By Laila Kearney

NEW YORK, March 15 (Reuters) - Healthcare and materials stocks pulled Wall Street lower on Tuesday in a second straight day of quiet trading as investors cautiously awaited news from the U.S. Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting.

While the Fed is not expected to raise interest rates at its meeting ending on Wednesday, investors will scour Fed Chair Janet Yellen's comments for clues indicating a path for future rate hikes.

"We're on auto pilot until we actually get the results of the Fed meeting tomorrow afternoon," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities in New York. "It's not unusual to (be in) wait-and-see mode as you head into a big announcement."

Ahead of the Fed meeting's outcome, smaller stocks sold off more than bigger ones as investors sought to reduce risk, said Mohannad Aama, managing director of Beam Capital Management LLC in New York.   Continuación...