Stocks Opened Lower After Retail Sales Data

U.S. stocks opened lower on Tuesday after a report on U.S. retail sales showed weaker growth than expected. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately fell 18.62 points, or 0.14%, to 12,855.42. The S&P 500 lost 3.47 points, or 0.26%, to 1,348.30. The Nasdaq Composite slid 6.06 points, or 0.21%, to 2,925.33.

Retail sales rose less than expected in January as consumers cut back on car purchases, but a rebound in an underlying sales gauge suggested a solid underpinning for the economy’s recovery. Total retail sales increased 0.4 percent last month, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday.

Boeing Co said on Tuesday it signed its largest ever commercial airplane order with Indonesia’s Lion Air in a deal worth $22.4 billion. Boeing said Lion Air, Indonesia’s largest carrier by passenger volume, has ordered 230 airplanes, including 201 737 MAXs and 29 next- generation 737-900 ERs.

As Greece scrambles to implement painful new budget cuts and reforms, the other member countries of the eurozone are trying to ensure Greece will be able to manage its debts after it receives a second massive bailout.

A run of downbeat economic news Tuesday reinforced expectations that the 17-nation eurozone’s economy shrank during the last three months of 2011 as the government debt crisis dragged on even the biggest and richest countries.

Britain’s inflation rate fell to 3.6 percent in the year to January from 4.2 percent the previous month, official figures showed Tuesday, to the likely relief of cash-strapped households which have seen muted pay increases more than eaten up by rising prices.

Crude-oil futures advanced Tuesday. Crude for March delivery rose 70 cents, or 0.7%, to $101.62 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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