An unexpected dip in home sales broke a promising four-month trend in a vital sector of the economy, depressing markets and helping to push retail stocks down 0.7 percent Thursday.
August sales of existing homes fell 2.7 percent from July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.1 million units, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales had risen 15.2 percent during the preceding four months.
Economists, who were projecting an increase in home sales, see a turnaround in the housing market as a major component to lasting economic recovery. The bursting of the housing bubble, which was inflated by lending standards now generally viewed as lax, sparked the recession and contributed to the financial crisis.
“When home prices show sustained gains, credit will become more widely available to other sectors because Wall Street will be able to price risks confidently,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the real estate trade group. “Stable home values will also allow more families to purchase consumer products and provide a strong boost for the broader economy.”
Investors looked past even a welcomed reduction in the number of new claims for unemployment last week and pushed the S&P Retail Index down 2.81 points to 377.84, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 0.4 percent, or 41.11 points, to 9,707.44.
The Labor Department said initial claims for unemployment insurance fell by 21,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 530,000.
Retail stocks on the wane Thursday included Charming Shoppes Inc., down 4.5 percent to $4.87; AnnTaylor Stores Corp., 4.4 percent to $15.56; Chico’s FAS Inc., 3.6 percent to $12.72; Saks Inc., 3.5 percent to $6.94, and Macy’s Inc., 2.3 percent to $18.01.
Among the vendors posting declines were Liz Claiborne Inc., down 8.8 percent to $5.31; G-III Apparel Group, 3.9 percent to $13.56, and Polo Ralph Lauren Corp., 2.8 percent to $73.51.
@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)