While the low volatility that has marked the prior two weeks is certainly anomalous, it is part and parcel of the more general trend of declining market moves.
Institutional Shareholder Services urged PrivateBancorp stockholders to reject Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce's latest takeover offer, citing possible Canadian housing market contagion that could undermine the $4.9-billion cash-and-stock bid.
Copper bounced from a four-month low touched on Monday after data showed a sharp drop on imports by China, the world's biggest consumer.
The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq trimmed gains after touching record highs for the second straight day on Tuesday as a rise in technology shares were offset by a fall in energy stocks.
Chintawongvanich, derivatives strategist at Macro Risk Advisors in NY said the CBOE Volatility Index, which is popularly known as the VIX, is the widely followed barometer of anticipated near-term volatility of stock market.
Investor sentiment has been bolstered by historically low US stock market volatility, last weekend's French presidential election result and solid corporate earnings.
The euro hit a six-month high against the dollar after Macron comfortably defeated far-right nationalist Marine Le Pen who had threatened to take France out of the European Union.
Royal Enfield looking to buy Ducati?
Having sold 55,451 units a year ago (at a growth of 1.2%), Ducati enjoys a heavy network in primarily developed countries. The company has reportedly set aside $18.2 billion for fines and expenses to fix as many as 11 million cars worldwide.
At 12:28 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI was down 1.33 points, or 0.01 percent, at 21,010.95, the S&P 500 .SPX was up 0.85 points, or 0.03 percent, at 2,400.23 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC was up 23.68 points, or 0.39 percent, at 6,126.34. It briefly touched a record high of 2,399.94.
Suggesting U.S. stocks remain expensive, the S&P 500 is trading at 17.8 times expected earnings, compared to its 10-year average of 14.2, according to Thomson Reuters Datastream.
The Nasdaq Composite was down 4.77 points, or 0.08 percent, at 6,095.99, after a record high of 6,106.11.
Endo International, Office Depot and Marriott also rose after reporting better-than-expected quarterly earnings.
Shares of Kate Spade rose 8.2 percent to $18.36 after bigger rival Coach Inc said it would buy the company for $2.4 billion.
Since Donald Trump's election in November the S&P 500 has risen almost 14 percent, raising questions about market valuations.