NEW YORK -
U.S. stocks were flat in volatile trade on Wednesday as investors awaited clarity on media reports that the European Central Bank would, with broad support from its council members, unveil an unlimited, sterilized program of bond purchases.
Bloomberg reported that Draghi's plan would involve unlimited buying of government bonds. The ECB has been expected to be cautious about disclosing the size of its bond-buying, given opposition from Germany's central bank.
The report comes ahead of an ECB meeting on Thursday and the Federal Open Market Committee's own policy meeting next week on Sept 12-13.
"I think there's a very significant risk that there's going to be a sell-the-news reaction. Even if the ECB comes with some kind of bond-buying program and the Fed announces some form of additional stimulus, I think there's a pretty good chance that the market will sell that news," said James Dailey, portfolio manager at TEAM Asset Strategy fund in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 15.14 points, or 0.12 percent, at 13,051.08. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was down 0.47 points, or 0.03 percent, at 1,404.47. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was down 4.40 points, or 0.14 percent, at 3,070.66.
(Additional reporting by Wanfeng Zhou)