A record low for pending home sales along with disappointing earnings weighed the markets down to a lower close with the Dow dropping 36 points to 12,576. Nasdaq tumbled 16 points to 2349.
On the upside
The Australian's Web site reported that China is seeking to expand its stake in BHP Billiton (NYSE: BHP), the world's largest miner.
MetroPCS (NYSE: PCS) reported a larger than expected 450,000 increase in new subscribers for the first quarter prompting an upgrade.
Second quarter earnings for MSC Industrial (NYSE: MSM) rose to surpass estimates as sales climbed and the industrial supply company forecast third quarter results above expectations.
On the downside
Standard & Poor's downgraded the credit rating of Broadridge Financial Solutions (NYSE: BR) and lowered its outlook citing the company's risk factor.
Credit Suisse downgraded Infineon Technologies (NYSE: IFX) citing the weak dollar and memory chip prices.
Trinity Biotech (NYSE: TRIB) announced that institutional investors committed to purchasing 1.8 million American Depositary Shares of the company at a 15% discount from the April 7 closing price.
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost a point to 712.