Wall Street stocks finished lower Wednesday as worries over higher US Treasury bond yields offset Verizon's $4.4 billion takeover of AOL.
At the closing bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at 18,067.60, down 37.57 points (0.21 percent).
The broad-based S&P 500 shed 6.25 (0.30 percent) at 2,099.08, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index lost 17.38 (0.35 percent) at 4,976.19.
US stocks fell sharply early in the season on spiking bond yields, but cut those losses later in the session as yields retreated a bit.
"The market is sort of catching its breath today and waiting for some data tomorrow," said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at S&P Capital IQ.
Key data Wednesday include the US retail sales report for April.
AOL shot up 18.7 percent on news the Internet pioneer would be bought by Verizon in an effort to boost the telecom giant's presence in online media and advertising. Verizon fell 0.4 percent.