The benchmark 10-year Treasury was up 1/32, diluting the yield to 1.839%. The dollar was up 0.35%, according to the U.S. dollar index .

The FTSE 100 in London was down 0.1%, while the DAX in Germany was behind by 0.32%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed up 0.37%.

The Japanese market was closed and is scheduled to reopen on Friday.

In corporate news, Hormel Foods ( HRL) announced that it is buying Unilever's ( UL) Skippy peanut butter business for about $700 million.

Hormel shares were unchanged while Unilever shares were down more than 1% in premarket trading.

Apple ( AAPL) has set its first-quarter earnings release for Jan. 23, with a conference call the same day to discuss the results.

Apple shares were down 0.55%.

Costco Wholesale ( COST) reported a December same-store sales increase of 9%, beating the consensus estimate of 6.5%.

Shares were flat.

Gap ( GPS) is buying women's fashion boutique Intermix for $130 million to help the company gain exposure to the luxury apparel market.

Gap shares were popping more than 4%.

Advanced Micro Devices ( AMD) appointed Devinder Kumar as its chief financial officer after a four-month search.

Shares were unchanged.

Mellanox Technologies ( MLNX) on Wednesday reduced its revenue forecast for the fourth quarter.

The data-storage company said it expects fourth-quarter revenue in a range of $119 million to $121 million, down from previous guidance of $145 million to $150 million.

Shares were plunging more than 16.5%.

Family Dollar Stores ( FDO) reported fiscal first-quarter earnings of 69 cents a share, missing the average analyst estimate of 75 cents a share, and revenue that was in-line with forecasts amid what it said was a challenging holiday shopping season.

Shares were tumbling more than 8.5%.

Quiksilver ( ZQK) co-founder Robert McKnight Jr reportedly will step down from his CEO post, effective Jan. 11. He has been with the surfing outfitter since 1991.

Former Walt Disney executive Andy Mooney will take over as CEO, according to The Wall Street Journal.

-- Written by Andrea Tse in New York.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Andrea Tse.

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