) -- Stock futures in the U.S. were mixed, but


looks to open higher following a blowout quarter from iPhone maker


(AAPL) - Get Report

and ahead of an announcement on rates from the

Federal Reserve


The Fed's open market committee is scheduled to announce the results of its first two-day meeting Wednesday afternoon. It's likely the central bank won't make a move on interest rates, but some economists think a

third round of quantitative easing

might arrive.

European shares were slipping while Asian stocks posted solid gains. The Nikkei 225 index in Tokyo rose 1.1% to close at 8,883.69.

In the U.S. on Tuesday,

stocks ended mixed

as tepid corporate earnings failed to impress, and an impasse between Greece and private investors in debt talks increased fears of a default.


Dow Jones Industrial Average

ended 33.1 points lower, or 0.3%, at 12,676. The

S&P 500

dropped 1.4 points, or 0.1%, to 1,315, and the Nasdaq rose 2.5 points, or 0.1%, to finish at 2,787.

In addition to the Fed's announcement, the economic calendar Wednesday includes the Mortage Bankers Association weekly index of application activity, pending home sales for December, and the Federal Housing Finance Agency housing price index for November.


(AAPL) - Get Report

scorched Wall Street estimates, and revenue soared to more than $46 billion in the fiscal first quarter as sales of the iPhone, iPad, and Macs were extremely strong in the holiday period.

Apple reported earnings

of $13.06 billion, or $13.87 a share, on revenue of $46.33 billion for the quarter ended Dec. 31. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected a profit of $10.15 a share on revenue of just more than $39 billion.


, the Swiss drugmaker, plans to offer $5.7 billion in cash to buy


(ILMN) - Get Report

, the U.S. DNA company.

Roche said it would offer to buy Illumina for $44.50 a share in cash, an 18% premium to Illumina's closing price of $37.68 on Tuesday.

Roche said it's making the hostile bid after it tried to negotiate a deal with Illumina but the U.S. company declined to participate.

Illumina urged shareholders not to take any action on Roche's offer until the board makes a recommendation. Illumina said its board will review the offer.

President Barack Obama, in the last

State of the Union address

of his term and the last before the November election, on Tuesday outlined his plan for keeping the economy's recovery on track, emphasizing the importance of the U.S. manufacturing industry and detailing changes to the tax code to encourage corporations to expand in America.

The president proposed to end tax deductions for outsourcing jobs overseas, and said every multinational company "should have to pay a basic minimum tax," referring to tactics used by many big corporations to shelter their profits overseas.


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United Technologies

, two components of the


, are expected to release fourth-quarter earnings before the opening bell Wednesday.

-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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Joseph Woelfel

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