By Kate Gibson, MarketWatch
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stocks trended mostly lower on Wednesday as investors sorted through mixed corporate earnings, as Apple Inc.'s record profit helped bolster the Nasdaq Composite.
"It is pretty much Apple on the plus side," said Andrew Fitzpatrick, director of investments at Hinsdale Associates Inc.
Wall Street's action marks "more of a consolidation of the market, which is healthy, given the three weeks that were very positive to begin the year, so we're having a little bit of a pause here," Fitzpatrick said.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) fell 74.02 points to 12,601.73.
The S&P 500 Index (SPX) fell 4.12 points to 1,310.53, with technology shares the sole sector rising among its 10 industry groups.
The Nasdaq Composite (RIXF) rose 7.46 points to 2,794.10.
Apple (AAPL) shares rallied a day after the globe's biggest technology firm reported quarterly earnings that blew past Wall Street estimates.
Disappointing outlooks from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) and Nvidia Corp. (NVDA) weighed.
The Federal Reserve is due to make a interest rate decision at 12:30 p.m., followed by an interest rate forecast at 2 p.m. and a press conference with Chairman Ben Bernanke at 2:15 p.m.
"I don't expect them to say anything out of the ordinary," said Fitzpatrick of the central bank's policy meeting.