Investors pushed retail stocks down 1 percent Wednesday ahead of comparable-store sales reports from U.S. retailers today.
The S&P Retail Index fell 3.54 points to 338.56 as the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 1.2 percent, or 101.63 points, to 8,512.28.
With full results from the government’s so-called “stress tests” due out today, investors breathed a sigh of relief as the $34 billion shortfall in Bank of America Corp.’s finances was smaller than expected.
Retail comps are expected to give the strongest indication yet of whether sales lost in March were shifted into April, as the timing of Easter moved into the latter month. As in previous months, they also will show just how important price has become to recession-addled shoppers.
J.P. Morgan analyst Charles Grom said discounters Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Target Corp. had favorable traffic trends last month, but apparel and accessories weren’t a big focus for shoppers.
According to Grom, Wal-Mart regained its price leadership in April, with a market basket of 50 items selling for $257.12, below Target’s price of $260.85 for the same goods. Target edged out Wal-Mart on price by 9 cents in March.
Shares of Target rose 0.5 percent Wednesday to $41.47 as Wal-Mart’s stock fell 1.9 percent to $49.51.
Stocks were up around the world, with the FTSE 100 in London ahead 1.4 percent to 4,396.46, as Burberry Group plc rose 0.6 percent to 432.50 pence, or $6.51 at current exchange, and Marks and Spencer Group plc was up 1.4 percent to 351 pence, or $5.28.
The CAC 40 in Paris increased 1.8 percent to 3,283.51. European firms gaining ground included PPR, up 3 percent to 63.18 euros, or $84.53; LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, 1.5 percent to 59.17 euros, or $79.17, and Zara owner Inditex Group, 0.2 percent to 33.12 euros, or $44.31. In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 rose 1.7 percent to 8,977.37.
My character, Dinah Madani, is just the coolest, [most] badass woman imaginable," says @amberroserevah. The actress stars in @marvel's newest series on @netflix, @thepunisher. To prepare for her role, Revah sat down with Homeland agents to get a real sense of with Dinah's day-to-day life is really like. Read our full interview on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
A scene from the 91st annual @macys Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade, which boasts 50 million TV viewers and 3.5 million on-site spectators, is considered one of the largest and most watched parades in the world. (📷: Jason Szenes/EPA-REX)
The circus came to @bloomingdales 59th Street on Tuesday night and lit up Lexington Avenue with acrobatic dancers, death-defying knife throwing, sword swallowing and aerial acts with no net. The 45 minutes of theatrics built up to unveiling the holiday windows depicting @swarovski crystal-encrusted circus pieces and scenes from “The Greatest Showman” – songs from the soundtrack included. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Joshua Scott)
The psychedelic fashion that pervaded the ’60s is back with an exhibit at the @museumofcityny. “Mode New York: Fashion Takes a Trip” chronicles the changing styles from 1960 through 1973 and features designers such as @ysl, @oscardelarenta and more. The exhibition, which is on display through April 1, is organized into four periods: First Lady Fasion, Youthquake, New Bohemia and New Nonchalance. Pictured here is model Pat Bardonella during the Garvey Day Parade in 1968. (📷: @kwamebphoto) #wwdeye #wwdfashion
“People should be a lot more honest in expressing both the dark and light of themselves. We need to give each other the space to do that because it’s the only way we can grow and evolve,” says @noelwells of her new film “Mr. Roosevelt,” which is largely based on her own struggles. Unexpectedly leaving @nbcsnl in 2014 after just one season, Wells felt set back in her self-esteem and career trajectory. She quickly refocused her energy to more personal projects, which led to the completion of “Mr. Roosevelt.” Read the rest of WWD’s interview with the “Master of None” actress on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
@barbrastreisand is giving fans a chance to see her perform up close in a new concert series, which makes its debut on @Netflix today. From behind-the-scenes takes to her concert performance in Miami last December, the two-hour streaming special captures Streisand in her element. Pictured here is the singer/actress photographed for WWD in 1963. (📷: Palmieri Tony) #wwdeye #wwdarchive
@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)