The markets opened lower as pending home sales fell to their lowest levels on record. The Dow lost 22 points to 12,589 while Nasdaq fell 6 points to 2358.
On the upside
An analyst upgraded Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance (Nasdaq: ULTA) on expected growth for the beauty store and salon chain.
The financial services sector rose on hopes of lower interest rates. Shares of brokerage firms like FCStone Group (Nasdaq: FCSX) rallied after recent losses.
MSC Industrial Direct (NYSE: MSM) raised its 3rd quarter profit and revenue outlook due to strong demand for its industrial supplies.
On the downside
Shares of Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) fell as details of a $7 billion capital infusion from an investment group emerged.
Alcoa (NYSE: AA), the world's 3rd largest aluminum producer, posted lower earnings that met expectations and offered a strong outlook for the year, but investors worried about costs and a weak dollar squeezing margins.
the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of
more nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 4 to 3 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap
stocks slipped 2 points to 710.