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Stock Market Today: Stocks Mixed as Fed Cuts Bond Buying to $25 Billion

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- U.S. stocks were mixed on Wednesday -- the Dow Jones Industrial Average  (DIA) down, the S&P 500  (^GSPC) flat, and the Nasdaq  (QQQ) up -- as the Federal Reserve maintained its federal funds rate and cut monthly bond buying by $10 billion to $25 billion, both moves largely anticipated by Wall Street.

Societe Generale economists note that any shift in the Fed's rhetoric will come no sooner than the September 16 to 17 FOMC meeting, and possibly even later. The "Fed's unlikely to break the summertime bliss," the economists wrote in a report.

The Dow dropped 0.19% to 16,880.36, recovering from session lows prior to the Fed's announcement, while the S&P 500 pared losses to hover at its flatline of 1,970.07.

The Nasdaq advanced 0.45% to 4,462.9, as Twitter (TWTR - Get Report) shares enjoyed in a post-earnings rally. The social network was surging 21.4% to $46.85 after showing it was able to accelerate user growth in the second quarter and earning 2 cents a share on $312 million in revenue. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected Twitter to lose a penny a share on $283.07 million in revenue.

Must Read: Fed Continues to Cut Bond Buying

U.S. second-quarter advanced GDP figures came in a stronger than expected, increasing at an annual rate of 4% vs. the consensus estimate of 3%. The first quarter's GDP result was upwardly revised to a decrease of 2.1%, from the prior estimate of 2.9%, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday. 

The July ADP employment change report, preceding Friday's July government job results, showed private payroll growth of 218,000, which supports the view that job growth is maintaining strength heading into the second half of the year. 

Shares of United States Steel Corp (X) moved 19.4% higher to $33.03 after reporting an unadjusted loss of 12 cents a share compared to a loss of 54 cents a share a year earlier.

Express Scripts (ESRX) jumped 5% to $70.61 after earnings of $1.23 a share beat analysts' estimates by a penny.

Bio-pharmaceutical company Amgen (AMGN) is cutting 15% of its U.S. workforce and will close two manufacturing plants in Washington and Colorado. Shares added 5.4% to $130.01.

Shares of Amazon (AMZN) edged 0.78% higher to $322.51 after announcing it is investing $2 billion in its India operation to push back again Flipkart.

European stock indices were little changed on Wednesday as a new round of U.S. and European Union sanctions against Russia over its suspected military backing of separatists in Ukraine coincided with a slew of corporate earnings from some of Europe's biggest companies.

In Tokyo the Nikkei 225 closed up 0.18% at 15,646,43. In Hong Kong the Hang Seng gained 0.37% to 24,732.21.

U.S. stocks on Tuesday were dragged down by concerns over sanctions against Russia for its role in the Ukrainian conflict and hurt by uncertainty over the Fed meeting which concludes today.

--By Keris Alison Lahiff and Andrea Tse in New York

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