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US stocks retreat on home sales, mixed earnings

US stocks moved lower Tuesday following weaker-than-expected housing sales and middling earnings results

About 60 minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 21.49 points (0.16 percent) at 13,628.21.

The broad-based S&P 500 fell 3.4 (0.23 percent) to 1,482.58.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq dropped 10.49 (0.33 percent) to 3,124.22.

Briefing.com linked the selling to weaker-than-expected existing-home sales, which hit an annualized rate of 4.94 million units in December, below the 5.1 million units forecast.

Investors digested uneven earnings Tuesday; markets were closed Monday for a public holiday.

Despite reporting a large loss and earnings that were below expectations, Verizon Communications rose 0.7 percent after adding some 2.1 million in new wireless customers.

Insurer The Travelers Cos. jumped 3.3 percent after beating analyst expectations due to lower payments related to natural disasters than in 2011.

Mining company Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold, which also beat expectations, rose 2.6 percent.

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion jumped 9.4 percent in anticipation of a new product launch this month and following reports it is considering divestitures.

Johnson & Johnson fell 0.9 percent after reporting better earnings than expected while trimming slightly its 2013 profit outlook.

Slumping aerospace giant Boeing, undergoing regulatory scrutiny following recent problems with its new 787 Dreamliner, was down again, by 1.4 percent.

Arena Pharmaceuticals retreated 7.3 percent after it indicated that European regulators had raised issues with its weight-loss drug, Belviq.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury rose to 1.86 percent from 1.84 percent late Friday. The 30-year edged up to 3.04 percent from 3.03 percent. Prices and yields move inversely.