Stocks Opened Lower amid Moderate Retail Sales Data

U.S. stocks opened lower on Tuesday, as investors assessing U.S. retail sales data that showed moderate gains last month. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately fell 169.41 points, or 0.68%, to 24,730.00. The S&P 500 lost 19.73 points, or 0.72%, to 2,710.40. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 74.88 points, or 1.01%, to 7,336.43.

U.S. retail sales rose last month as bigger after-tax paychecks helped compensate for rising fuel costs. The value of sales increased 0.3 percent in April, matching the median forecast, after a 0.8 percent advance in the prior month that was stronger than initially reported, Commerce Department figures showed Tuesday.

Oil prices rose to multiyear highs on Tuesday, bolstered by signs that major oil producers are still committed to reducing supply and the rising specter of U.S. sanctions against Iran. June West Texas Intermediate crude added 53 cents, or 0.7%, to $71.49 a barrel. July Brent crude oil gained 73 cents, or 0.9%, to $78.94 a barrel.

Home Depot Inc on Tuesday missed Wall Street forecasts for sales at established stores, as an unusually long winter hit sales of typical spring products like lawn-mowers and patio furniture. Sales at Home Depot stores open for more than a year rose 4.2 percent in the three months ended April 29. Home Depot’s total net sales rose 4.4 percent to $24.95 billion, but fell short of expectations of $25.16 billion.

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