A roundup of trading on major world markets:
NEW YORK - Wall Street stocks opened slightly higher despite a report showing a dip in US home prices in December and mixed earnings reports from the retail sector.
Five minutes into trade on Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 20.30 (0.13 per cent) to 16,227.44.
The broad-based S&P 500 inched 0.68 (0.04 per cent) higher to 1,848.29, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index tacked on 4.64 (0.11 per cent) at 4,297.61.
The Case-Shiller index for home prices in 20 leading US cities fell 0.1 per cent in December, the second straight monthly decline.
LONDON - European stocks retreated on profit-taking and worries about China, but the euro gained strength from revised higher growth forecasts for the European Union.
London's benchmark FTSE 100 index closed 0.52 per cent lower at 6,830.5 points on Tuesday, as investors locked in profits from a run that culminated in a 14-year high for the index on Monday.
Mining companies listed in London also suffered because of their supply role to the slowing Chinese economy.
Frankfurt's DAX 30 slid 0.1 per cent to 9,699.35 points and the CAC 40 in Paris dipped 0.1 per cent to 4,414.55 points.
Madrid's IBEX 35 ran against the pack, gaining 0.48 per cent to 10,242.5 points on Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's prediction that Spain's long-struggling economy will grow 1.0 per cent this year and 1.5 per cent next year.
The euro gained to 1.3750 to the US dollar, from 1.3735 late on Monday.
HONG KONG - Asian markets closed mostly lower ahead of the release of key US data later as a strong lead from Wall Street was offset by profit-taking, while Chinese shares were hit by fresh liquidity concerns.
Tokyo jumped 1.44 per cent, or 213.92 points, to 15,051.60 on Tuesday and Seoul added 0.81 per cent, or 15.81 points, to close at 1,964.86.
However, Hong Kong lost 0.32 per cent, or 71.36 points to end at 22,317.20, Shanghai gave up earlier gains and closed 2.04 per cent lower, shedding 42.47 points to 2,034.22, and Sydney eased 0.12 per cent, or 6.4 points, to 5,433.8.
WELLINGTON - The NZX 50 Index eased 2.134 points, or about 0.04 per cent, to 4967.511 on Tuesday.