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Stocks little changed after Fed releases minutes

Specialists Peter Giacchi, Michael O'Connor and Douglas Johnson,

Specialists Peter Giacchi, Michael O'Connor and Douglas Johnson, foreground left to right, work at the post that trades Sprint on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Monday. (July 8, 2013) Credit: AP

The stock market turned quiet Wednesday and just managed to notch a fifth straight day of gains.

Even the release of minutes from the latest meeting of the Federal Reserve didn't jolt stocks.

Two major U.S. stock indexes were barely changed. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose a fraction of a point to 1,652.62. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 8.68 points to 15,291.66.

Every move the Fed has made in recent months has been analyzed. But the minutes offered no surprises. The report showed many Fed members want to see further job gains before cutting back on the central bank's stimulus measures. It also showed some divisions among officials over when the Fed should slow that stimulus.

"I don't think the minutes offered anything that would change [my] view of the market's direction or the Fed's intentions," said Quincy Krosby of Prudential Annuities.

The small gain in the S&P 500 kept alive its five-day winning streak, its best in two months.

Small-company stocks continued their surge. The Russell 2000, which represents 2,000 publicly traded companies with small market valuations, rose 2.37 points to a record 1,020.42.

The Nasdaq, meanwhile, gained 0.47 percent to 3,520.76.

-- AP

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