Market Insider

Yellen speech bigger focus than Fed minutes

VIDEO1:3401:34
Investors look ahead to Fed minutes, Yellen speech

Minutes from the Fed's last meeting should sound dovish when they are released Wednesday, but markets are already looking ahead to a speech Friday from the central bank's chair, Janet Yellen, for possible new clues on when it could hike rates.

The Fed gave a nod to weather-related weakness in the first quarter after its April meeting, but that statement was also released before a whole batch of disappointing reports including April's retail sales.

LPL Financial economist and strategist John Canally said the key to the central bank minutes, when they are released at 2 p.m. ET, will be what they say about the nature of the first quarter's softness.