US stocks posted modest losses on poor profit forecasts from technology firms and a surprising dip in home construction.
Earnings from Salesforce.com and Autodesk were worse than expected. Other technology shares losing ground on Wednesday included Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Cisco and International Business Machines (IBM).
New housing construction unexpectedly plunged 11 per cent in October, according to figures from the Commerce Department, bringing housing starts down to an annual rate of 529,000, the lowest since April. Most economists had predicted a monthly rise.
The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 11.11 points, or 0.11 per cent, to close at 10,426.31. The broader Standard and Poor's 500 Index inched lower by 0.52 points, or 0.05 per cent, to 1,109.8. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 10.64 points, or 0.48 per cent, to 2,193.14.
The US currency fell against the euro to 66.82 euro cents from 67.24 euro cents Tuesday. But the dollar rose slightly against the Japanese currency to 89.38 yen from 89.27 yen.