The stock market showed little life on Wednesday as it closed yet another trading day barely changed from the day before.
Major indexes flitted between tiny gains and losses in the morning, rallied a bit after the Federal Reserve released minutes from its last meeting, then petered out toward the close. The Standard and Poor’s 500 ended lower, but barely — down just 0.09 percent.
It was the fourth day in a row that the index moved less than one-half of one percentage point.
“There’s no real reason to rally and no real reason to decline,” said Matthew Tuttle, CEO of money manager Tuttle Tactical Management. “It’s been really boring.”
The S&P 500 fell 1.98, or 0.09 percent, to 2,125.85. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 26.99, or 0.15 percent, to 18,285.40. The Nasdaq composite rose 1.71, or 0.03 percent, to 5,071.74.
Stocks fell from the opening of trading as investors weighed the latest batch of earnings reports for the first quarter.
With most companies out with their results, earnings per share for S&P 500 stocks are expected to have risen 3 percent from a year ago, according to S&P Capital IQ, a data provider. That is better than the drop that financial analysts had been predicted in early March, but still low by recent standards.
More worrisome for markets, analysts have been slashing their forecasts for future quarters too. At the beginning of 2015, they were expecting a 7 percent jump in S&P 500 earnings for the full year. Now they expect an increase of less than 1 percent.
The tiny move down on Wednesday broke a bit of a streak for the Dow index: four straight record high closes through Tuesday.
The minutes of the Fed’s meeting from April showed that policymakers at the central bank generally thought June was too early to raise rates. Stocks have been propelled higher in part by easy money policies at central banks. A rate increase would be the first since the global financial crisis.