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Wednesday could be the end of an era for Fed testimony

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Yellen's September surprise

Fed Chair Janet Yellen's semiannual congressional testimony this week could be the final hearing of its type in a zero-rate environment.

From the market's perspective, every word of Yellen's testimony on the economy and policy will be important since it's unclear exactly when the Fed will start raising interest rates—but it is expected to be before she testifies on the economy again next winter.

The last two meetings scheduled for this year with news conferences afterward are in September and December. Yellen's speech is expected to be released at 8:30 a.m. ET, and her testimony begins before the House Financial Services Committee at 10 a.m.