US stocks open slightly higher as traders await earnings, minutes from latest Fed meeting

U.S. stocks are opening slightly higher as traders get ready for the start of company earnings reports.

Metals maker Alcoa will release its first-quarter results after the closing bell Wednesday. In early trading the stock was up 2 percent.

Later Wednesday the Federal Reserve will release minutes from its latest policy meeting.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 50 points, or 0.3 percent, to 17,927 as of 9:35 a.m. Eastern time Wednesday.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index increased five points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,081. The Nasdaq composite rose 18 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,929.

The price of oil fell 2.5 percent to $52.66 a barrel in New York.

Bond prices didn't move much. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note held steady at 1.89 percent.