NEW YORK (December 4, 2012)—As budget talks dragged on Tuesday in Washington, stocks edged slightly lower at the close.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 14 points to close at 12,952 Tuesday, trading in a narrow range of just 82 points.
The Standard and Poor's 500 index lost two points to close at 1,407.
The Nasdaq composite was down five and a half points at 2,997.
Investors are waiting on developments from Washington in the budget talks, which are aimed at avoiding a series of sharp government spending cuts and tax increases that begin to kick in Jan. 1.
Big Lots soared after the discount retailer raised its forecast for full-year profits.
Falling stocks narrowly outnumbered rising ones on the New York Stock Exchange where volume was light at 3.2 billion shares.