News Summary: Cyprus offsets homebuilder data

AP News
Posted: Mar 19, 2013 5:28 PM

HOME BUILDERS: The Dow and other U.S. indexes started higher following a report of a surprisingly large increase in new home construction in February. The index gained as much as 62 points in morning trading.

CYPRUS VOTES 'NO': Early gains for stocks didn't last after investors turned their focus to Cyprus, where lawmakers rejected a planned bailout for banks that would have called for raiding the savings accounts of ordinary citizens, setting a new precedent in Europe's ongoing debt crisis. The vote leaves the Cyprus's future in the euro zone in question.

AT THE CLOSE: The Dow closed with a gain of four points. The Standard & Poor's 500 closed down by the same number of points and has now closed lower for three straight days, its longest losing streak of the year.