Investing.com - U.S. stocks opened lower on Tuesday, as data showed that the U.S. trade deficit narrowed less than expected in March and as investors awaited a string of first-quarter earnings reports.
During early U.S. trade, the Dow 30 retreated 0.45%, the S&P 500 declined 0.39%, while the NASDAQ Composite slid 0.37%.
Official data showed that the U.S. trade deficit narrowed to $40.38 billion in March, from $41.87 billion in February, whose figure was revised from a previously estimated deficit of $42.30 billion. Analysts had expected the trade deficit to narrow to $40.30 billion in March.
American International Group (NYSE:AIG) saw shares tumble 1.57% after the insurer said late Monday that first-quarter profit dropped 27%, due to higher claims costs at the property-casualty business.
General Electric (NYSE:GE) added to losses, declining 0.41% after French President François Hollande said the firm''s $17 billion offer for Alstom (PARIS:ALSO)''s energy business is not good enough.
Elsewhere, Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) dove 8.13% as nearly 500 million shares of the social media stock from company insiders were poised to hit the market as a lock-up period expired.
Meanwhile, Coca-Cola (NYSE:CCE) slid 0.42% amid reports the beverage maker plans to remove brominated vegetable oil from all its U.S. drinks by the end of this year, abandoning an ingredient that has been targeted by food activists.
After removing BVO from Gatorade last year, rival company Pepsico (NYSE:PEP), down 0.49%, said that it too is replacing the additive in the rest of its lineup.
On the upside, Office Depot (NYSE:ODP) shares soared 14.87% after the retailer raised its full-year forecast and said it would close at least 400 stores in the U.S. over the next two years.
General Motors (NYSE:GM) was also on the upside, rising 0.37% after the automaker said Jim Federico, an executive involved in the investigation of faulty ignition switches, has decided to retire. Federico was executive director of global vehicle integration.
Other stocks likely to be in focus included Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Whole Foods (NASDAQ:WFM), Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN), American Financial Group (NYSE:AFG), First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) and Discovery Communications (NASDAQ:DISCA), scheduled to report quarterly results later in the day.
Across the Atlantic, European stock markets were lower. The DJ Euro Stoxx 50 declined 0.79%, France’s CAC 40 retreated 0.78%, Germany''s DAX slid 0.77%, while Britain''s FTSE 100 shed 0.48%.
During the Asian trading session, Hong Kong''s Hang Seng slipped 0.19%, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 remained closed for a national holiday.