U.S. markets closed lower, despite a late-day surge that pushed the indexes off their lows and close to positive territory in the last 20 minutes of trading.
The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 0.13 per cent, or 11.79 points, to 9,096.72. The broader S&P 500 slipped 0.26 per cent, or 2.56 points, to 979.62.
Investors had initially driven shares lower after consumer confidence data that showed lowered expectations trumped what was called one of the best housing reports in years - an index that tracks U.S. home prices showed its first monthly increase since the summer of 2006. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index of 20 major cities out Tuesday rose 0.5 per cent from April. Prices are still 17.1 per cent below May a year ago, though.
"Stabilizing residential real estate prices is absolutely an essential ingredient in transitioning out of the recession, though inventories are still far too high to warrant a sustained upturn," said Gluskin Sheff economist David Rosenberg in an afternoon report. "Bottoming is one thing, booming is quite another."
In Canada, the S&P/TSX slipped 1.74 per cent, or 186.89 points, to 10,570.54 as the price of oil slipped $1.15 to $67.23 (U.S.) a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The mining sector sustained the deepest losses, down 3.5 per cent.
Rogers Communications shares were down 4.78 per cent on lower revenue projections for the rest of the year. Plutonic Power lost 24.51 per cent on fears that British Columbia will put alternative energy projects on hold.