Stocks Slide, Dragged Down by GDP, HP

Stocks declined Tuesday, after soaring to new 2009 highs on Monday, as a report showed the economy grew less than expected in the third quarter and HP issued a cautious outlook.

The Dow was down more than 50 points in early afternoon trading, led by JPMorgan, Hewlett-Packard and Alcoa .

Oil dropped below $76 a barrel, while gold was trading above $1,168 a troy ounce.

Today's five-year note auction was met with strong demand: $42 billion of five-year notes were sold at a high yield of 2.175 percent and a bid-to-cover ratio of 2.81, 47 basis points above the average and the highest of the year for the denomination.

GDP was revised to show the economy grew at a 2.8 percent rate in the third quarter, lower than the initial reading of 3.5 percent.

But the Conference Board's gauge of consumer confidence rose to 49.5 in November from 48.7 in October. And home prices improved for a fifth straight monthin September, Case-Shiller reported.

The Dow has ended the holiday-shortened Thanksgiving week higher about 64 percent of the time over the past 59 years — and more recently, it's gained in six of the past eight Thanksgiving weeks.

Ironically, its best Thanksgiving week performance since 1950 took place last year, while the financial crisis was accelerating: the Dow gained almost 10 percent that week — but only partially making up for the carnage of the prior three weeks.

Winterizing Your Portfolio - A CNBC Special Report
Winterizing Your Portfolio - A CNBC Special Report

Financial stockstook a hit amid worries that Chinese banks will flood the markets with billions in capital, which could put pressure on equity markets.

In earnings news, Hewlett-Packardhit its earnings target, as expected, but said economic conditions remain challenging.

Medtronic , Hormel and Heinz beat earnings expectations. Barnes & Noble and Borders delivered weak reports and cautioned that the holiday season will be challenging.

Investors will also watch Qualcomm, as the European Commission closes a four-year antitrust case against the chipset maker without levying a fine.

At 2 pm New York time, the Federal Reserve releases the minutes of the most recent FOMC meeting.

This Week:

TUESDAY: GDP (2nd look); Conference Board consumer confidence; Sheila Bair press briefing; Five-year note auction; Fed minutes; Earnings from American Eagle, Barnes & Noble, Dollar Tree, Hormel, Medtronic and TiVo
WEDNESDAY: Weekly mortgage apps; weekly jobless claims; durable goods; personal income; Reuters/U of Mich consumer sentiment; new-home sales; weekly crude inventories; 7-year note auction; Earnings from Deere, Tiffany
THURSDAY: Thanksgiving—all US financial markets closed
FRIDAY: Black Friday—US markets open but NYSE closes early

Send comments to