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Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, April 9, 2012. (BRENDAN MCDERMID/Brendan McDermid/Reuters)
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, April 9, 2012. (BRENDAN MCDERMID/Brendan McDermid/Reuters)

At the open: Dow, TSX decline Add to ...

North American stocks slipped at the start of trading on Wednesday, a day after U.S. stocks enjoyed their biggest gains in more than a month.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 47 points or 0.4 per cent, to 13,068. The broader S&P 500 fell 3 points or 0.2 per cent, to 1,388. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index fell 1 point, to 12,136.

Key U.S. technology stocks were among the biggest laggards, after releasing quarterly results on Tuesday evening when markets were closed. International Business Machines Corp. fell 2.2 per cent and Intel Corp. fell 2.6 per cent. While both companies topped expectations with their first quarter earnings, investors were disappointed that IBM missed sales expectations and Intel’s gross margins declined.

However, Apple Inc. continued its rebound following an earlier five-day losing streak. The shares rose 1.1 per cent after more than a 5 per cent gain on Tuesday.

Berkshire Hathaway Inc.’s “B” shares fell 0.9 per cent after Warren Buffett announced that he had prostate cancer – though he will receive treatment and is not going to step down from his position as Berkshire chief.

In Canada, convenience-store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. surged 15 per cent after it announced a $2.8-billion deal to buy its way into the Norwegian market.

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