U.S. stocks closed slightly lower on Tuesday, as investors failed to hold positive momentum on domestic data and Greece debt talks. (Tweet This)
"I think we're all just hanging out for that jobs number—just bounce around a little bit above and a little bit below," said Kim Forrest, senior equity analyst at Fort Pitt Capital. "We're all waiting on the Fed and I think a lackluster jobs number is not going to give us reason to buy or sell."
Rising bond yields sent utilities more than 1 percent lower as the greatest decliner in the S&P 500. Intel fell 2 percent to continue pressuring the Dow Jones industrial average after Monday's decline on the acquisition of smaller chipmaker Altera. Earlier on Tuesday, the Dow fell more than 100 points in the open before climbing to trade about 30 points higher.
It's "not been a healthy rise," said Lance Roberts, general partner at STA Wealth Management. "News on and off again about Greece. Fairly weak (data). We're ... maybe in a short-term topping process."
The European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund agreed on a proposed deal for Greece, a senior EU official said in a Reuters report. The proposal still needs acceptance from Athens, which offered a rival plan. Greece faces a Friday deadline for a $300 million euro repayment to the IMF.
U.S. stocks opened lower and recovered losses around noon following the European close. The German DAX came off lows to end about 0.9 percent lower.
"Greece was a potential obstacle and the fact that it looks like a better (chance of resolution) that took off pressure," Adam Sarhan, CEO of Sarhan Capital, said of the midday rise in stocks. Auto sales for May also boosted investor sentiment on the health of the consumer, he said.
Crude settled up $1.06, or 1.76 percent, at $61.26 a barrel for its highest close since December 9. Gains in oil boosted the energy sector about 1 percent to lead gains in the S&P 500.
"Overall some of the weaker data helped underscore what (Fed governor) Brainard said. That helped keep a lid on the Fed being aggressive this year," said Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial. "There are expectations that there is going to be a political resolution (on Greece)."
Analysts said the S&P 500 and Dow pared losses after coming near their 50-day moving averages, while slight gains in the Russell 2000 and the Dow transports also helped support stocks.
Earlier, the transports declined as airlines briefly plunged about 2 percent or more amid the Federal Aviation Administration's temporary halt of United Airlines flights. Morning headlines about unverifiable bomb threats against U.S. aircraft initially also weighed on sentiment.
Treasury yields followed the German bund yield higher after euro zone inflation came in at 0.3 percent in May, above the 0.2 percent forecast.
The U.S. 10-year Treasury yield traded as high as 2.279 percent after holding below 2.20 percent for the last week.
Eric Stein, co-director of global income at Eaton Vance Management, said the rally in yields began after better-than-expected economic data on Monday and accelerated on Tuesday's news out of the euro zone.
He pointed out that while the dollar gained against major world currencies on Monday, the greenback fell 1.5 percent against major world currencies on Tuesday with the euro topping $1.11. Earlier, the greenback hit a 13-year high against the yen.