The Federal Reserve left US interest rates on hold after its two-day meeting on Thursday morning Australian time.
However Fed chair Janet Yellen indicated there would be one rate rise before the year’s end.
The markets were unimpressed with Wall St closing lower for a fifth straight session, with investors fretting about whether Britain would vote to leave the European Union.
Despite holding official interest rates steady, the Fed downgraded its forecasts for economic growth.
Ms Yellen said next week’s vote in Britain, on whether to leave the EU was factored into the central bank’s decision at this month’s meeting.
Stocks were actually gaining ground for the majority of the trading session, before falling abruptly just before the close.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.2 per cent to 17,640.
The S&P 500 slipped 0.2 per cent to 2,071 and the Nasdaq ended 0.2 per cent lower at 4834.
It was a different story across the Atlantic, with the major markets posting solid gains after a five-day losing streak.
In London, the FTSE 100 Index closed 0.7 per cent higher at 5966. In Paris, the CAC 40 climbed 1 per cent to 4172, while in Frankfurt the DAX added 0.9 per cent to 9,606.7.
Locally, the share market opened up 0.3 per cent, with the ASX 200 at 5160.6
At the same time, the Australian dollar was worth 74.1 US cents, having rallied overnight.
On the cross-rates, it was worth 69.7 eurocents, 52.1 British pence, 78.5 Japanese yen and $NZ1.052.
West Texas Crude oil had eased to $US47.87 a barrel, Tapis had increased to $US49.46 and spot gold had climbed to $US1291.11 an ounce.