New York - Wall Street stocks edged up in opening trade on Tuesday following a report showing modestly higher US retail sales in August.
Five minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was at 16 413.78, up 42.82 points.
The broad-based S&P 500 rose 0.22% to 1 957.42, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.12% to 4 811.74.
US retail sales rose 0.2% in August, boosted by robust auto sales, but slightly below analysts' consensus estimate.
The retail sales report was one of the few remaining US data points ahead of the Federal Reserve's two-day monetary policy meeting that begins on Wednesday. Speculation is divided over whether the Fed will deem the economy strong enough to withstand the first rate hike since 2006.
"Trading volume will likely be on the light side again today as participants adopt a guarded approach ahead of Thursday's rate hike decision," said Briefing.com analyst Patrick O'Hare.