Stocks Higher after Home Sales Data

US stocks were modestly higher in early trading on Tuesday as U.S. existing-home sales rose 3% in April. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately gained  28.38 points to 12,532.86. The S&P 500 added 7.18 points to 1,323.17. The Nasdaq Composite was up 11.34 point to 2,858.55.
 
Sales of existing homes rose 3.4% in April and distressed activity tapered off as the slow housing market recovery takes further root. The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that sales rose to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 4.62 million, from a downwardly revised 4.47 million in March.

Shares of Facebook fell again at the open on Tuesday as doubts about the company’s valuation increased after Reuters reported that underwriters cut their revenue forecasts for the social networking site shortly before the IPO. The consumer Internet analyst at Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) , the lead underwriter for last week’s Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) IPO, trimmed his outlook for the social-networking firm’s revenues just days before the deal went live, Reuters reported Tuesday.

The 17-country eurozone risks falling into a “severe recession,” the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned on Tuesday, as it called on governments and Europe’s central bank to act quickly to stop the slowdown spilling over into the global economy. OECD Chief Economist Pier Carlo Padoan said the eurozone is “close to” the possible scenario of a 2 percent economic contraction this year that the Paris-based think tank laid out as its worst-case scenario last November.

Best Buy Co Inc reported better-than-expected quarterly results and maintained its outlook for the year as a turnaround plan started to take hold, sending shares in the world’s largest consumer electronics chain up more nearly 4 percent. Sales rose 2.1 percent to $11.61 billion, beating the analysts’ average estimate of $11.52 billion. Net earnings fell to $161 million, or 47 cents a share, for the quarter ended May 5, from $255 million, or 64 cents a share, a year earlier.

 Fitch cut Japan’s sovereign credit status on Tuesday to the lowest level among global ratings agencies as a political stalemate dims the chance that the country can curb its snowballing debt.

Oil futures traded modestly lower Tuesday, giving back some of previous session’s gains on fears about the euro zone after growth expectations there were lowered. Crude for June delivery (NMN:CLM2)  retreated 33 cents, or 0.4%, to $92.24 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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