U.S. stocks declined amid mixed earnings reports and data that renewed concern on the strength of the global economy as the Federal Reserve began a two-day monetary policy meeting.

A rally in equities has tapped the brakes as investors await the latest from the Fed. Policy makers kept interest rates near zero last month, opting to hold off for a better read on the impact of weaker growth in China and lackluster inflation. Central bankers in Europe and China last week signaled commitment to bolstering their economies, which helped the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index erase a loss for the year.

The S&P 500 fell 0.3 percent to 2,065.98 at 4 p.m. in New York, after briefly slipping below its average price during the past 200 days.

International Business Machines Corp. fell 4.4 percent to a five-year low. The company disclosed today that regulators are investigating its accounting treatment of certain transactions in the U.S., the U.K. and Ireland.

Some 43 S&P 500 companies report earnings today, with analysts projecting profits for index members dropped 6.1 percent in the third quarter. Of the companies that have released results this season, 74 percent have exceeded profit projections, while 57 percent missed sales estimates.

Source : Bloomberg