The Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.3 percent at 2,218.76.
Japanese heavy industrial shares posted strong gains. Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. jumped 6.8 percent. Kobe Steel rose 6.8 percent. Cosmo Oil soared 14.7 percent.
Australian surf wear retailer Billabong International dived 26 percent amid disappointment at its moves toward a $287 million takeover deal that is half of what was offered last December.
Apart from the Fed minutes, U.S. corporate earnings will draw attention later in the week. Banks Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase are among the blue chips scheduled to issue reports.
Wall Street stocks ended higher Monday, as investors waited to see whether big U.S. companies would deliver on expectations of strong earnings in 2013. The Dow Jones industrial average hit another record Tuesday, rising 0.4 percent to close at 14,673.46. The Standard & Poor's 500 added 0.4 percent, to 1,568.61. The Nasdaq composite gained 0.5 percent to 3,237.86.
Benchmark oil for May delivery was down 28 cents to $93.92 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract gained 84 cents to finish at $94.20 a barrel on the Nymex on Tuesday.
In currencies, the euro fell to $1.3088 from $1.3099 late Tuesday in New York. The dollar fell to 99.04 yen from 99.28 yen.
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