Expectations of another cut to the Federal Reserve’s monthly bond buying program were realized late in the day, contributing to a broad decline on Wall Street that sent retail shares down 2 percent.
The S&P 500 Retailing Industry Group fell 17.76 points to 876.98, returning to its losing ways after an up day Tuesday that ended an eight-session losing streak. Retail declines were larger than those in the broader market, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 1.2 percent to 15,738.79 and the S&P 500 was off 1 percent to 1,774.20.
In Ben Bernanke’s final meeting as chairman of the Federal Reserve, the Federal Open Market Committee, citing improved prospects for economic growth in the U.S., trimmed the Fed’s monthly stimulus program by another $10 billion to $65 billion beginning next month. Janet Yellen, currently vice chairman of the Fed, succeeds Bernanke as chairman on Friday.
U.S. markets started the day with the jitters — and European markets ended theirs with losses — as interest rates were raised in South Africa and Turkey to calm fears about their currencies.
Only a handful of U.S. fashion, beauty and retail issues tracked by WWD managed gains, with Coldwater Creek Inc., still in the midst of an exploration of strategic alternatives, rising the most, up 3.6 percent to 94 cents. Cache Inc. and Hanesbrands Inc. were the only other members of the WWD sample to advance more than 1 percent, with Cache up 1.5 percent to $4.70 and Hanesbrands up 1.4 percent to $65.07 in advance of its after-market report on fourth-quarter earnings, which came in 8 cents above analysts’ consensus estimates at 98 cents a share on an adjusted basis.
Hanesbrands also raised its 2014 guidance after boosting its quarterly dividend 50 percent, to 30 cents a share, on Tuesday.
Among those dragged down the most by Wednesday’s sell-off were American Apparel Inc., down 8.1 percent to 99 cents; Quiksilver Inc, down 7.3 percent to $6.98; Avon Products Inc., down 5.7 percent to $14.76, and Sears Holdings Corp., down 5.3 percent to $36.36. Other equities in the fashion and beauty sectors endured declines of less than 4 percent for the day.
Overseas, the DAX in Frankfurt was down 0.8 percent to 4,156.98, while the CAC 40 in Paris fell 0.7 percent to 4,156.98. The FTSE MIB in Milan dipped 0.6 percent to 19,337.42, while the FTSE 100 in London fell 0.4 percent to 6,544.28.
It was a mixed day for fashion, luxury and retail stocks. Mulberry’s shares closed down 23.8 percent to 7.05 pounds, after the British leather goods label issued a profit warning Wednesday. Yoox lost 3.1 percent to 28.01 euros, while Brunello Cucinelli was down 1.7 percent to 19.86 euros. British supermarket chain Sainsbury’s was among the FTSE 100’s biggest decliners, down 2.3 percent to 3.48 pounds, after the supermarket announced that its chief executive officer Justin King would resign in July.
Among the stocks on the rise were Asos.com, up 2.6 percent to 62.09 pounds; French Connection, which gained 4.1 percent to 37 pence and Aeffe, which rose 3.1 percent to 0.78 euros.
The pound traded for $1.66 against the U.S. dollar Wednesday, while the euro went for $1.37.
“What he has done at Vuitton is really exceptional,” said @gameofthrones’ actress Gwendoline Christie on @mrkimjones’ final show for @louisvuitton. “He has rebooted luxury in terms of making it commercial, viable and contemporary. And most importantly artistic. He has never compromised his artistic vision for the sake of commodity.” (📷: @zefashioninsider)
After seeing a demand for men’s wear from its customers, British contemporary women’s wear label @ariesarise has added a men’s wear component and will launch a unisex collection with @mrporterlive. The 20-piece collection includes jackets, denim, logo T-shirts and more with deconstructed ‘90s vibes. Set to launch on January 18, you can shop the pieces on Aries’ website and on mrporter.com. #wwdfashion
“And so spending so much time with a character who thinks like that, inevitability you try and analyze yourself and go back and think about your own demons and dark chapters that you had in your life,” says @thedanielbruhl of his role in TNT’s “The Alienist.” The show, set in the Gilded Age of New York, also stars Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans. Head to WWD.com to read about how 39-year-old Brühl prepared for the role and why he thinks the show is so relevant to today #wwdeye ( 📷: @Eriktanner)
Now that Celine Dion’s collection has topped $10 million in sales, the pop superstar, fashion icon and newly-minted industry player is eyeing growth in Asia. Read the full report by @tiffanyap, link in bio. #wwdnews #celinedion
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
Among the familiar faces at @off____white’s show was a surprise figure: Japanese artist @takashipom, pictured here on Wednesday morning. Other show-goers included @jerrylorenzo, who spoke about his upcoming project: a @nike collaboration for back to school, with designs inspired by his childhood on the West Coast. Sitting in the front row were Future, Don Crawley, @miguel and more. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: Stephane Feugere)
According to @laurentsai, former “Terrace House: Aloha State” cast member, she didn’t know she was auditioning for the Japanese version of “Real World.” “I was telling a couple of my friends and someone’s like, ‘That sounds a lot like Terrace House.’ I was like, ’No it can’t be.’” Turns out, it was. But Tsai isn’t just a reality star — she’s an illustrator who has worked with Starbucks Japan and most recently, she’s dipping her toes into the fashion world. Head to WWD.com to read about her time on the show, modeling and her art. #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
More changes are coming to New York Fashion Week: Beginning with the spring 2019 collection, @alexanderwangny will move his New York show to June from September, adopting a biannual schedule with collections shown in June and December. Additionally, the @cfda is planning for an official summer/winter fashion season taking place as soon as June and December 2018. Read more about the upcoming changes on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @slovekinpics)