The Fed’s failure to promise indefinite stimulus in yesterday afternoon’s statement seems to have caught equity market bulls off guard, with global indices retreating from their recent highs. Whilst the tone was more measured than many were expecting, the balance of probabilities continues to point to no reduction at the December meeting. In that context, today’s pull back may represent nothing more than a buying opportunity for those brave enough to fill their baskets ahead of a potential Christmas rally. Of course it takes two views to make a market, and more cautious investors will ask whether the reaction to the statement hints at the potential panic that could ensue when tapering day finally arrives… The worst of this morning’s FTSE100 fallers are chemical manufacturers Croda International, offered almost 6% lower after announcing a Q4 outlook that disappointed the broker community. Increasing competition in key markets also gave cause for concern, and index re-shuffle watchers will be aware that Croda now sit in the bottom 5 in the FTSE 100 list by market cap… Also struggling for support this morning are energy behemoth Royal Dutch Shell, trading 5% lower after a significant miss on Q3 numbers as profits fell 32%. Pipeline attacks in Nigeria that impacted on production during the period had a significant impact on the numbers, as did a drop in demand. In more positive news communications group BT sit perched at the top of the index after making fresh 10-year highs. Earnings beat market estimates, falling less than expected as subscribers to their television sports packages helped bolster revenues during the quarter. With taper chatter frustratingly back on the agenda, this afternoon’s Jobless Claims measure will make for a significant talking point ahead of Non-Farm Payrolls that have been pushed back to next week after the US government finally got its house in order. The Chicago Business Survey rounds the day off on the macro front, with Cable still holding above the key 1.60 level even after last night’s Dollar strength.CMC Markets is an execution only service provider. The material (whether or not it states any opinions) is for general information purposes only, and does not take into account your personal circumstances or objectives. Nothing in this material is (or should be considered to be) financial, investment or other advice on which reliance should be placed. No opinion given in the material constitutes a recommendation by CMC Markets or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person.