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Stocks fall before Fed meeting; LinkedIn soars on buyout

U.S. and global stocks were lower Monday, as investors waited to see what the Federal Reserve would do with interest rates later this week and awaited the fate of Britain’s membership in the European Union.

LinkedIn shares jumped after Microsoft announced plans to buy the company.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average lost 44 points, or 0.3 percent, to 17,823 as of 9:50 a.m. Eastern. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell a point, or 0.1 percent, to 2,095 and the Nasdaq composite fell 4 points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,890.

THE FED: The U.S. Federal Reserve had been expected to start raising interest rates, but now appears likely to remain in a wait-and-see mode. The policy board holds meetings later this week, and investors are closely watching for comments by Chair Janet Yellen.

While last month there was a large group of investors betting that the Fed would raise interest rates, the last two monthly jobs reports in the U.S. have put a damper on expectations.

LINKED UP: Shares of professional social networking site LinkedIn soared $62.66, or 48 percent, to $193.67 after Microsoft announced it was purchasing the company for $26.2 billion in cash. Shares of Microsoft fell $2.14, or 4 percent, to $49.36 after the deal was announced.

BRITISH REFERENDUM: Stocks in Europe remain under pressure on investor concerns over whether Britain will choose to remain in the European Union in a June 23 referendum. Recent polls have shown the race is tight, with some polls showing a majority of British voters are in favor of exiting the EU.

Germany’s DAX fell 1.5 percent, France’s CAC-40 fell 1.7 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 fell 1 percent.

ENERGY: U.S. crude fell 59 cents to $48.49 a barrel, having fallen $1.49 to $49.07 a barrel in New York late Friday. Brent crude, the benchmark for international oil prices, fell 48 cents to $50.06 a barrel in London. Oil prices had reached 11-month highs in the last few days.

CURRENCIES: The dollar declined to 106.02 yen from 107.16 yen late Friday in Asia. The euro fell to $1.1269 from $1.1298.

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