Sales rose 4.4 percent from January 2012, but only 0.1 percent from December, which was in line with expectations.
By close of trading, the Dow Jones industrial average shed 35.79 points or 0.26 percent to finish at 13,982.91. The Nasdaq composite index added 10.38 points or 0.33 percent to reach 3,196.88. The Standard & Poor's 100 was flat, gaining 0.9 points or 0.06 percent to 1,520.33.
On the New York Stock Exchange, 1,800 stocks advanced and 1,271 declined on a volume of 3.3 billion shares traded.
The 10-year treasury note fell 15/32 to yield 2.033 percent.
Against the dollar, the euro fell to $1.3449 from Tuesday's $1.3454. The dollar fell to 93.26 yen from 93.48 yen.
The Nikkei 225 index in Tokyo dropped 1.04 percent, 117.71 points, to 11,251.41.
The FTSE 100 index in London gave up 0.33 percent, 20.73 points, to 6,359.11.
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