StockMarketWire.com - US markets edged lower when trading got underway on Tuesday, given slimmer volumes, as traders wind down and head to the department stores to make those important last-minute purchases.

The Dow was recently down 0.18% at 24,747.48, the S&P 500 eased 0.09% and the Nasdaq slipped 0.22%.

European markets were mixed in afternoon trading. The FTSE 100 was up 0.11% but the DAX was down by 0.19% and the CAC 40 by 0.2%.

COMMODITIES

WTI crude was recently 0.28% higher at $57.32 per barrel and Brent was up 0.21% at $63.54 per barrel.

Gold was a pinch lower at $1,264.4 an ounce, silver was down 0.06% and copper was off by 0.22%.

ECONOMIC NEWS

The US current-account deficit decreased to $100.6bn (preliminary) in the third quarter of 2017 from $124.4bn (revised) in the second quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis said today.

Privately-owned US housing starts in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,297,000, the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development reported.

Meanwhile, privately-owned US housing units authorised by building permits in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,298,000.




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