On the data front, the Commerce Department said the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index, excluding the volatile food and energy components, edged up 0.1 percent last month after an upwardly revised 0.2 percent increase in February.
Last month's gain in the so-called PCE was in line with economists' expectations. In the 12 months through March the core PCE rose 1.6 percent after advancing 1.7 percent in February.
The core PCE is the Fed's preferred inflation measure and is running below the U.S. central bank's 2 percent target. The Fed said on Wednesday its policy-setting committee was continuing to "closely" monitor inflation.
Chicago PMI for April was 50.4, below expectations of 53.0 and March's 53.6 print. Meanwhile, consumer sentiment for April came in at 89.0.
In oil markets, U.S. crude fell 0.2 percent to settle at $45.96. Still, it posted a roughly 20 percent gain for April.
Brent crude traded at $48.14 a barrel, about flat.
— Reuters contributed to this report.