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Patient or not? Fed suspense peaking

All eyes on the Fed
The Fed rate debate
Fed-dependent spots

The long-awaited statement from the Federal Reserve expected on Wednesday will settle the burning investor question of whether or not "patient" remains in the text. A change in the keyword could shed light on when rates might rise for the first time in nearly a decade.

Most analysts believe employment data indicate an improving economy and provide impetus for a rate hike this year.

"Payrolls data has continued to chug along quite well," said Bill Stone, chief investment officer at PNC Wealth Management. His firm expects a rate hike in July as it sees the recent softness in economic data as due partly to the harsh winter and the "the normal ebb and flow of economies."