Stocks fell on Tuesday after data showed a sharp drop in consumer confidence, heightening worries about economic growth.

Financial stocks were among the top decliners, with the S&P financial index <.GSPF> down 1.4 percent.

Bank of America Corp dropped 2.4 percent to $8.19 and JPMorgan Chase & Co was off 1.4 percent to $37.10, weighing on the Dow average as the biggest decliners.

Consumer confidence crumbled in August to its lowest level in more than two years as the fallout from political wrangling over a budget deal took a toll.

This isn't unexpected, given the last month, what with the lack of movement in Washington and the decline in stocks ... If we see positive action there, it will be a blip. Otherwise, I think this could be a trend, said Ron Kiddoo, chief investment officer at Cozad Asset Management in Champaign, Illinois.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was down 72.47 points, or 0.63 percent, at 11,466.78. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> took off 9.03 points, or 0.75 percent, at 1,201.05. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> slipped 15.86 points, or 0.62 percent, at 2,546.25.

In other data, U.S. single-family home prices fell slightly in June as the market continued to crawl along at depressed levels.

The Federal Open Market Committee releases minutes of its August 9 at 2 p.m. EDT. (1800 GMT) Investors are seeking clues on the policy-setting panel's economic outlook.

Amid concerns about the debt crisis in Europe, Italy's bond sale drew relatively weak demand despite the European Central Bank buying Italian debt in recent weeks.

(Reporting by Angela Moon; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)