Markets are roiled by prospect of Fed exit

Ben Bernanke

NEW YORK (AP) — Financial markets are sliding after the Federal Reserve said it could end its huge bond-buying program by the middle of next year.

U.S. stocks fell sharply in midday trading and the yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to the highest point since August 2011. Gold led a rout in commodity prices.

The Dow Jones industrial average was down 209 points, or 1.4 percent, at 14,902 in midday trading Thursday.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index was down 25 points, or 1.5 percent, to 1,603. The Nasdaq composite fell 51 points, or 1.5 percent, to 3,392 points.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note climbed to 2.41 percent.

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said Wednesday the central bank could end its bond purchases by mid-2014.

Global markets also fell.

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