NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve on Wednesday looked past a dismal reading on first quarter U.S. economic growth and announced a cut in its massive bond-buying stimulus, a sign of its confidence in the economy's prospects.
* Monthly bond purchases cut to $45 billion from $55 billion
* The decision was unanimous
* Forward guidance from last statement was unchanged
WAYNE KAUFMAN, CHIEF MARKET ANALYST AT ROCKWELL SECURITIES IN NEW YORK
"I think this was literally exactly as expected. No surprise at all. The Fed already said it expected some weakness because of weather, but it is also seeing growth pick up and consumer spending rising. Steady as she goes. The Fed won't cause anyone to change anything here."
STOCKS: S&P 500 and Dow cling to small gains; Nasdaq still lower BONDS: U.S. bond prices generally higher FOREX: Dollar index remains lower
(Americas Economics and Markets Desk; +1-646 223-6300)