Today is the day of anticipated rate cuts by the Federal Reserve, and exchange traded funds (ETFs) seem to be holding their breath while they wait for the 2:15 p.m. ET announcement.

The markets expect the Fed to cut rates by 0.5% to 1%, but there’s thinking that a smaller or larger cut could be made, reports Tim Paradis for the Associated Press.

China and Norway did their part by making some global interest rate cuts. The Europe Central Bank and Britain are also expected to follow suit next week as concerns about a global recession spread, say Burton Frierson and Elizabeth Piper for Reuters. China’s rates went from 6.93% to 6.66%, while Norway cut its rates by 0.5% to 4.75%.

Japan will have a policy meeting on Friday to consider cutting rates, but for now, they’re watching the markets closely.

After yesterday’s big gain in the markets, another dose of good news followed with a report that U.S. factory orders rose by the largest amount in three months in September, reports Martin Crutsinger for the Associated Press. Economists had been expecting a decline after August’s 5.5% drop, but instead saw an increase of 0.8%.

On stronger markets, oil is on the move and rallying from a 17-month low, says Mark Williams for the Associated Press. Some oil traders suspect crude has hit a bottom. Mid-morning, it’s trading at $66.11 a barrel.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.