NEW YORK: Stocks were unable to find any momentum on Tuesday. The market drifted between gains and losses throughout the day, then headed steadily lower in the last hour of trading.

Investors found some solace in strong results from Home Depot and Macy’s. The enthusiasm was not enough, however, to offset an unexpectedly steep decline in consumer confidence this month.

“The weather is having an impact on everything, from homes, vehicles to retail sales, but fortunately we expect that pent-up demand to return later this year,” said Joseph Tanious of JPMorgan Funds.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 27.48 points to 16,179.66. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 2.49 points to 1,845.12 and the Nasdaq composite fell 5.38 points to 4,287.59.

Investors were able to forgive Macy’s and Home Depot for missing analysts’ sales expectations. Macy’s rose $3.19, or 6 percent, to $56.25 and Home Depot closed up $3.11, or 4 percent, to $80.98.