U.S. stock index futures edged lower Tuesday after a weaker-than-expected retail sales report and following Moody's ratings downgrade of a handful of euro zone nations.
Rating agency Moody's warned it may cut the triple-A ratings of France, the United Kingdom and Austria, while it downgraded the ratingsof Italy, Portugal, Spain, Slovakia, Slovenia and Malta.
The ratings agency's move came a day after Greece's lawmakers approved a new round of austerity measures aimed at securing a bailout package.
Meanwhile, Germany's investor and analyst sentiment jumped to its highest since April 2011.
On the economic front, retail sales rose less than expectedin January to 0.4 percent, according to the Commerce Department. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast retail sales climbing 0.7 percent last month.
Meanwhile, import prices rose 0.3 percent in January, according to the Labor Department as petroleum and food rebounded strongly. Economists polled by Reuters had expected prices to gain 0.2 percent.
Bank of America slipped after Citi cut its rating on the financial giant to "neutral" from "buy," citing ongoing earnings headwinds for the firm. Still, Citi raised its price target on BofA to $8.5 from $8.
Meanwhile, Boeing gained after the Dow component said it signed a deal worth $22.4 billion, its largest commercial airplane order ever, with Indonesia's Lion Air.
On the tech front, the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple's upcoming iPad 3 will use the 4G networks of both Verizon and AT&T . The news comes after the iPad maker hit a major milestone, closing above $500 a share for the first time in the previous session.