Bank stocks rose broadly on Wednesday as expectations for a June rate hike from the Federal Reserve increased.
The SPDR S&P Bank ETF (KBE) advanced 0.75 percent, outperforming the broader stock market. The Dow Jones industrial average closed marginally higher with McDonald's contributing the most gains, while the S&P 500 fell 0.14 percent.
The Fed concluded its two-day policy meeting Wednesday afternoon, giving a positive assessment of the U.S. economy while keeping rates unchanged, as was widely expected.
In a statement, the Fed's policymaking committee did express some misgivings about the U.S. economy growing just 0.7 percent in the first quarter, but added they see the weakness as "transitory."
The committee "continues to expect that, with gradual adjustments in the stance of monetary policy, economic activity will expand at a moderate pace, labor market conditions will strengthen somewhat further, and inflation will stabilize around 2 percent over the medium term."
Ian Lyngen, head of U.S. rates strategy at BMO Capital Markets said there were several changes in the FOMC's statement, "but all were in-line with expectations."
"They are still viewing the economy as 'just fine' and another rate hike in June is still clearly on the table," he said.
Market expectations for a rate hike next month jumped to 75 percent from 60 percent, according to Wells Fargo.