U.S. retail stocks — still near all time highs — slipped 0.4 percent today as investors continued to digest the economic scene in Europe, where Greece this week finally secured a second bailout.
The S&P Retail Index dipped 2.16 points to 569.07 — not far from its peak of 577.59, set Tuesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.2 percent, or 27.02 points, to 12,938.67, dragged down by component Wal-Mart Stores Inc., which fell 2.5 percent to $58.60. The discount giant’s stock fell 3.9 percent Tuesday after it reported weaker fourth-quarter profits.
Retail’s gainers included Chico’s FAS Inc., up 16.6 percent to $14.94 after the firm beat fourth-quarter profit estimates; Pacific Sunwear of California Inc., 4.6 percent to $2.05; Urban Outfitters Inc., 3 percent to $29.33 and Macy’s Inc., 2.7 percent to $37.68.
Markets have been on edge for weeks, mirroring Greece’s on again, off again bailout negotiations, but now that the deal is sealed investors are pouring over the details and fretting about the broader economic picture, which is dim for the region.
Europe’s major stock markets ended the on a down note, with the DAX in Frankfurt and the FTSE MIB in Milan leading the way.
The German and Italian markets both fell 0.9 percent to 6,843.87 and 16,557.30, respectively, while the CAC 40 in Paris sank 0.5 percent to 3,447.37 and the FTSE 100 in Lodon dropped 0.2 percent to 5,916.55.
The day’s biggest gainers included French Connection, which rose 5.3 percent to 0.50 pounds, and Asos.com, which climbed 1.7 percent to 19.06 pounds.
Among the decliners were Hugo Boss, which fell 2 percent to 70.07 euros; Carrefour, which tumbled 2.1 percent to 17.92 euros, and Safilo Group, which was down 1.4 percent to 5.45 euros. The euro traded at $1.32 while the pound traded at $1.57.