By Barbara Kollmeyer, MarketWatch , Ryan Vlastelica

Investors looking ahead to Fed meeting minutes

U.S. stock-index futures were little changed on Wednesday, with traders finding few reasons to keep pushing shares higher following a string of records for major indexes and ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

The stock market will be closed in the U.S. on Thursday and it will close early on Friday. Many traders and other market participants will be out for the holiday, which could mean a quieter market, although the lighter volume could also leave it susceptible to bigger swings if unexpected headlines occur.

Read:Here's when markets close on Black Friday (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/heres-when-markets-close-on-black-friday-2016-11-18)

In the latest economic data, durable goods surged 4.8% in October (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/durable-goods-orders-see-jet-fueled-48-gain-in-october-2016-11-23), in large part due to strong demand for commercial aircraft. Separately, the number of American applying for jobless benefits rose more than expected in the latest week (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/jobless-claims-jump-18000-to-251000-2016-11-23), although the increase comes just one week after claims dropped to a 43-year low.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures eased 6 points to 19,001, while S&P 500 index futures slipped 1 point to 2,199.75. Nasdaq-100 futures fell 5 points to 4,870.

The Dow, S&P, and Nasdaq--along with the Russell 2000 --all hit records on Wednesday and closed at new highs. The was the second straight session for the four to do so, the first time that the four indexes hit simultaneous and consecutive records since March 1999. Both the Dow and the S&P closed above psychological milestones on Tuesday, with the blue-chip index ending above 19,000 and the S&P topping 2,200. However, those levels hold little fundamental or technical significance.

Opinion:Why the Dow at 19,000 is no cause for celebration (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/dow-19000-is-no-cause-for-celebration-2016-11-22)

Even if the major indexes manage to deepen that record run on Wednesday, it may not be significant for the overall picture.

"The price action will only really become relevant on Monday, when 'normal service' resumes. I think we'll see a bit more of a short squeeze, but it's not 'real' buying per se, just a bit of momentum and a desire to squeeze the bears," said Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG, in emailed comments.

Read: Tom DeMark now sees 5%-6% retreat for stock markets in wake of Trump rally (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/tom-demark-now-sees-5-6-retreat-for-stock-market-in-wake-of-trump-rally-2016-11-22)

Stocks to watch:Eli Lilly(LLY) shares tumbled 14% premarket after the company said its Alzheimer's drug failed (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/eli-lilly-shares-slide-premarket-after-company-says-alzheimers-drug-trial-failed-2016-11-23).

Deere & Co.(DE) rose 2.4% after profit and sales beat expectations (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/deeres-stock-surges-after-profit-and-sales-beat-expectations-2016-11-23).

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co.(HPE) and HP Inc.(HPQ) both fell in late trading Tuesday after reporting earnings (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/hewlett-packard-revenues-shrink-just-like-the-company-2016-11-22).

Read:Hewlett-Packard revenues shrink, just like the company (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/hewlett-packard-revenues-shrink-just-like-the-company-2016-11-22)

Urban Outfitters Inc.(URBN) shares fell 10% in late trading after an earnings miss (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/urban-outfitters-shares-slip-after-earnings-miss-2016-11-22).

Other markets: European stocks were largely weaker, though the FTSE-100 index (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/commodity-stocks-pull-ftse-100-higher-once-again-2016-11-23) bucked that trend with a 0.6% gain, led by basic materials companies. U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond is scheduled to deliver his "autumn statement" to parliament later Wednesday.

Oil prices rose moderately ahead of updated U.S. inventory data from the Energy Information Administration. Crude prices have been buffeted ahead of next week's meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.

The dollar traded mostly steady, while gold prices inched up.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 23, 2016 08:53 ET (13:53 GMT)

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