Wall Street indexes move little ahead of key inflation data

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Merck Co rises as government looks to buy COVID treatment.

Dow down 0.09%, S&P up 0.12%, Nasdaq up 0.42%

On Wednesday, the United States stock index decreased slightly in early trade, driven by gains in key technology stocks, although investors avoided large bets ahead of key inflation data this week and an upcoming Federal Reserve meeting.

Buying into new and less reputable meme stocks from so-called retail investors continued, with Clover Health stock rising 13.8% to a record high.

The company closest akin to the quarterly rally this year, GameStop fell 1.3% before its retail results, due after the bell.

The so-called Mega stocks dominated trading volume over the last few weeks, as retail traders take to shorten stocks with the highest number of money-outs.

It is going to be high and participation good, but there remains a risk of high speculation and market manipulation within these meme stocks, said Rob Sechan, managing partner and co-founder of NewEdge Wealth.

Major bank stocks including Morgan Stanley, Citigroup and Goldman Sachs dropped between 0.2% and 0.9% as U.S. Treasury yields hit a more than one-month low in the last two years.

The small gains in the mediumweight technology stocks, particularly the Nasdaq gave the FAANG group a slight boost.

But Wall Street indexes have moved little this week amid a dearth of cues with most investors sticking to the sidelines on Thursday before the key inflation data.

I think we are going to stay in a staggering pattern, while investors try to figure out if inflation is to be more stable or more permanent, Sechan said of NewEdge Wealth.

The next Fed meeting is also expected to shed more light on the bank's policy plan. Although inflation has increased in recent months, a weak labor market is broadly expected to keep the bank dovish.

At 9:44 a.m. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 29.83 points, or 0.09%, at 34,569. 99 and the S&P 500 was up 5.17 points, or 0.12%, at 4,232. 43 Nasdaq Composite was up 13.5 points, or 0.62%, at 13,982. 93

Chinese stocks showed little reaction to a sweeping package of legislation designed to bolster the United States' capability to compete with Chinese technology. The move drew some criticism from Beijing.

Campbell Soup Co. slashed its full profit 5.6% after it reported earnings below expectations and reported its 2017 earnings forecast due to higher costs in the second quarter.

As the drugmaker Merck Co rose 1.9% after it said that the U.S. government had agreed to buy approximately 1.7 million courses of the Company's experimental COVID -- 19 treatment, molnupiravir, for around $1.2 billion if it is authorized in the country.

Advancers overcame decliners on the NYSE by a 1.19 - to -1 ratio. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 1.55 -- to 1- ratio on the Nasdaq.

The Nasdaq index recorded 15 new 52-week highs and two new lows, while the S&P Index recorded 73 new highs and two new lows. The best way to describe this is to take the time in which you have been asked with a valid phone call.

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