Stocks were in a holding pattern but slightly higher at Wednesday's opening bell as traders wait for the Fed minutes and earnings season to get underway. Shell (RSD.A) is buying BG Group (BRGYY) for $70 billion in cash and stock. European energy stocks surged on the news. The Fed minutes from the March meeting when policymakers decided to drop the word ‘patient’ will release at 2 p.m., Eastern. Investors will look carefully for any clues on when interest rates will rise. Before the bell, Rite Aid (RAD) beat earnings estimates on both the top and bottom lines for its latest quarter. The drug store chain, however gave a weaker than expected full-year outlook.