Stocks Close Mostly Higher as Caution Reigns

Stocks ended mostly higher on Tuesday as investors took a cautious tone a day ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monetary-policy decision. The Dow industrials slipped 1.38 points, or 0.01%, to 15,520.59. The S&P 500 index rose 0.63 point, or 0.04%, to 1,685.96. The Nasdaq Composite rose 17.33 points, or 0.48%, to 3,616.47.

Consumer confidence fell slightly in July one month after touching a five-year high, but Americans’ views of the economy suggest growth could strengthen “in the months ahead,” according to a closely followed survey.

Home prices rose in May by the most in more than seven years as the recovery in U.S. residential real estate gained momentum.The S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values climbed 12.2 percent from May 2012, the biggest 12-month gain since March 2006,
after advancing 12.1 percent a month earlier, a report showed today in New York.

Morgan Stanley has agreed to pay a $100,000 fine to New Jersey state securities regulators for selling exotic exchange-traded funds to unwary investors, state officials said on Tuesday. The consumer confidence index dipped to 80.3 from upwardly revised 82.1 in June, the Conference Board said Tuesday.

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