US markets edge higher in early trade, Japan's decision to postpone sales tax increase

Economic Indicators Associated Press

U.S. stocks are opening mostly higher following some encouraging news from Japan and Germany.

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Japanese markets rose after the country decided to postpone a sales tax increase, and a measure of investor sentiment in Germany rose after 10 months of declines.

In the U.S., the Standard & Poor's 500 index rose three points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,044 as of 9:35 a.m. Eastern time Tuesday.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 13 points, or 0.1 percent, to 17,660.

The Nasdaq composite rose 12 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,683.

Home Depot fell 1 percent after earnings at the nation's biggest home improvement retailer came in just shy of analysts' forecasts.

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The price of oil fell 61 cents to $75.03 a barrel in New York.