NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stocks opened slightly lower on Tuesday as U.S. house prices rose and durable goods orders declined.
The S&P 500 was down 0.17%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.09%, and the Nasdaq dropped 0.23%.
U.S. house prices rose 0.9% in March, according to the Case-Shiller Home Price Index, pulling the year-on-year increase up to 5%. Nineteen of 20 cities measured showed gains, led by a 3% increase in San Francisco. The increase was as economists had expected.
Durable goods orders dropped 0.5% in April after jumping 4.4% in March. The reading was in line with economists' forecasts. Excluding transportation, durable goods rose 0.5% after a 0.4% increase in March, better than an expected 0.3% increase.Orders for core capital goods climbed 1% for a second straight monthly gain, a sign of increasing business investment. "April's durable goods figures confirm that, following the earlier disruption caused by the unseasonably cold weather in the Northeast and the West Coast port dispute, the factory sector was getting back on track as spring approached," said Paul Ashworth, chief economist at Capital Economics. Deals news dominated business headlines on Tuesday. Time Warner Cable (TWC - Get Report) surged 7% after Charter Communications (CHTR - Get Report) announced a $55 billion deal to acquire the cable operator. The deal marks a 14% premium to Time Warner's closing price on Friday. The acquisition, if approved, will make waves in the cable industry by combing the second- and fourth-largest cable operators in the U.S. EMC (EMC) agreed to acquire privately held cloud software company Virtustream for $1.2 billion. The deal is expected to close in the third quarter and should add to revenue and earnings in 2016. General Motors (GM) was slightly lower on a Wall Street Journal report that said federal prosecutors are closing in on criminal charges against the automaker over a faulty ignition switch linked to more than 100 deaths. Twitter (TWTR) was slightly higher on reports the social network attempted to purchase mobile reader app Flipboard for $1 billion. The company had reportedly been in ongoing negotiations, though they have since hit a snag, according to Re/code. AutoZone (AZO) shares were on watch after the company reported a mixed quarter. The car parts retailer reported same-store sales up 2.3%, though overall revenue of $2.49 billion missed by $10 million. Apple (AAPL) is seeing a C-suite shakeup as designer Jony Ive has been named chief design officer. Ive's day-to-day management duties will be assumed by executives Richard Howarth and Alan Dye on July 1. Amazon (AMZN) will start paying taxes in a number of European countries where it has large operations, halting the practice of funneling sales through low-tax haven Luxembourg. The European Union has been in battle with tech companies including Apple and Amazon for making low-tax agreements in the eurozone.