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Dow rises, S&P briefly higher after Fed

U.S. stocks traded in a range Wednesday, amid sharp declines in Apple shares on disappointing earnings, as investors eyed the Fed statement.

The Federal Reserve kept rates unchanged and continues to expect "only gradual increases" in the Fed funds rate.

The U.S. dollar index struggled for direction in volatile trade after the Fed statement release. The euro was last near $1.13 and the yen at 111.4 yen against the greenback.

Treasury yields edged off session lows.

"Nothing takes June off the table here," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities. "At the end of the day we want June on the table. We want economic data to be improving."

The Federal Open Market Committee's post-meeting statement said, "economic activity appears to have slowed" and that "growth in household spending has moderated, although households' real income has risen at a solid rate and consumer sentiment remains high."

The latest statement removed the line pointing to risks from global economic and financial developments.

The Dow Jones industrial average extended earlier gains to trade about 50 points higher. Apple contributed the most to declines, with Boeing and Goldman Sachs the top contributor to gains.

The S&P 500 attempted to trade in positive territory again, with telecoms and energy leading, and tech lagging.

U.S. crude oil futures settled up $1.29, or 2.93 percent, at $45.33 a barrel. Earlier, WTI hit a fresh high going back to Nov. 6. WTI initially pared gains after weekly oil inventories from the EIA showed a build of about 2 million barrels.

The Nasdaq composite erased gains for April so far and held more than half a percent lower, weighed by declines in Apple,, Alphabet, Microsoft and Facebook, which is due to report earnings after the close.

"Probably the biggest news overhanging the market today (is) Apple's revenue miss and certainly revenue decline, ending a pretty long stretch of...