After earlier gains, Europe’s major indices all closed down when they ended Wednesday’s trading sessions. The FTSE 100 in London dipped 0.1 percent to 5,507.40, while the CAC 40 in Paris was down 1 percent to 3,071.08. The DAX in Frankfurt fell 2 percent to 5,771.27, and the FTSE MIB in Milan slipped 0.9 percent to 14,796.55.
Although a successful auction of Italy’s debt earlier on Wednesday initially boosted Europe’s markets, the effect petered out by the end of the day. The Italian government auctioned 9 billion euros’ worth of six-month bills at a yield of 3.25 percent, half the borrowing costs the country had paid on its debt in November. But investors were still said to be concerned over the performance of Italy’s longer-term debt, which is set to be auctioned today. Meanwhile, the borrowing costs on Italy’s 10-year bonds were still high at 7 percent, which is viewed as an unsustainable level for the country.
In earlier trading Wednesday in Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 ended unchanged at 8,423.62, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index declined 0.6 percent to 18,518.67.
The U.S. markets were impacted by news from the European Central Bank stating that banks placed $590.72 billion with the ECB overnight, an indication that European banks would rather earn low interest rates than lend to one another, even on a short-term basis. That news pushed the euro down to $1.294, the lowest level against the dollar in 11 months.
In the U.S., the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.1 percent to 12,151.41. The S&P Retail Index was also down 1.1 percent, to 524.47.
Most U.S. retail stocks fell during a day of relatively light trading, including Sears Holdings Corp., which said Tuesday it would close between 100 and 120 Kmart and Sears full-line stores as it attempts to rejigger operations to cut losses and restore profitability. Shares of Sears fell 0.2 percent, or 5 cents, to close at $33.33.
Other retail losers were Abercrombie & Fitch Co., which saw its shares fall 2.4 percent, or $1.19, to $47.99. Shares of Bebe Stores Inc. declined 2.1 percent, or 18 cents, to $8.29. Shares of teen retailer Hot Topic Inc. were down 3 percent, or 21 cents, to $6.82.
Among department stores, shares of Macy’s Inc. rose 1.2 percent, or 39 cents, to $32.67, while Kohl’s Corp. ticked up .4 percent, or 22 cents, to $50.09. Another gainer was J.C. Penney Co. Inc., whose shares rose 0.1 percent, or 5 cents, to $35.34.
One surprise was American Apparel Inc., whose shares rose nearly 2 percent, or 1 cent, to 76 cents. The biggest gainer for the over-the-counter trading session was Bluefly Inc., up 21.1 percent, or 35 cents, to $2.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)