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At the open: Confidence skewers Dow Add to ...

North American stocks fell soon after the start of trading on Tuesday, after a disappointing reading on U.S. consumer confidence.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 34 points or 0.3 per cent, to 10,778. The broader S&P 500 fell 5 points or 0.4 per cent, to 1138. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index fell 34 points or 0.3 per cent.

Research In Motion Ltd. fell 2.5 per cent, after it made a couple of big announcements on Monday evening, including the unveiling of the PlayBook - a tablet computer to compete against Apple Inc.'s iPad. Then again, Apple Inc. shares fell as well, dipping 2 per cent at the start of trading.

The S&P/Case-Shiller home price index for 10 metropolitan areas rose 4.1 per cent in July, over last year. The index rose 0.8 per cent over June. However, the 20-city index fell 0.1 per cent, month-over-month. Meanwhile, the Conference Board's consumer confidence index slipped to 48.5 in September, a worse-than-expected reading that puts the index at a seven-month low.

KB Home fell 4.1 per cent, Cisco Systems Inc. fell 2.5 per cent, Kraft Foods Inc. fell 1.7 per cent and Alcoa Inc. fell 1.3 per cent.

Commodity prices were relatively stable, but Canadian producers saw their shares decline. Suncor Energy Inc. fell 0.7 per cent and Teck Resources Ltd. fell 1 per cent.

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