Brent crude oil’s rise back above $50 a barrel helped lift stocks on global markets on Wednesday, while upbeat earnings and economic data soothed worries the world economy may be headed for another slowdown.

All three major U.S. stock indexes hit record highs in early New York trading as Boeing (BA.N) and AT&T (T.N) led another set of strong earnings reports from U.S. companies.

A U.S. dollar index gained slightly and U.S. Treasury prices were nearly flat as investors waited on the Federal Reserve’s statement from its two-day meeting to see if the U.S. central bank gives any new indications about when it will begin paring its bond holdings and next raise interest rates.

Many analysts and investors expect the Fed to say at its September meeting it will begin reducing its bond portfolio, but they will be watching for any hints on the timing at this week’s meeting. Further Fed rate hikes are not seen as likely until at least December.

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