The slowdown in Apple iPhones put investors in a bad mood and sent stocks into negative territory this morning.
Apple stock plunged over 8 percent after the tech giant reported its first sales decline in 13 years. That disappointment, combined with the long-awaited Federal Reserve speech on rates, brought out the sellers.
The S&P 500 is lower by 2 points to 2,088, the Dow Jones Industrial average has dropped 23 points to 17,967 and the Nasdaq is off by 30 points to 4,856. The S&P Retail ETF is dropping 20 cents to sell at $45.34.
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. was initiated with a sell rating and a $25 price target at Deutsche Bank. Analyst Tiffany Kanaga wrote, “”With little visibility into rebranding plans, we see little support for an overly bullish view on the business.” Kanaga felt that the market was overlooking the turnaround headwinds and the tepid apparel backdrop. She also suggested that the brand was suffering from a lingering negative perception about the label. According to Thomson/First Call there are five analysts with an underperform rating on the company. The stock is dropping over 3 percent this morning to $27.64 and has gained 24 percent for the past year.
Shopify Inc. announced that it is turning into a small business lender. The commerce platform launched Shopify Capital, a merchant cash advance product. Shopify already provides shipping solutions and payment options for its customers. This new service helps online businesses borrow money without going through a lengthy process that other lenders might require from an emerging online business. Shopify stock is up 12 cents to trade at $31.59 in early trading.
Amazon announced a new pickup location at California State University in Long Beach. It will open in the fall and will allow customers to pickup and return Amazon orders. Amazon plans to open 5 more of these locations this year and all are located within a university. Amazon reports its first quarter earnings on Thursday, April 28. The stock is flat this morning at $615.
Looking ahead to the rest of today, at 2:00 the market will hear whether interest rates will remain the same. After the market closes, online payment processor PayPal Holdings Inc. will report earnings. Investors expect solid results, but the online payment market is getting crowded as Facebook Inc. has launched P2P payments, not to mention Square and Apple Pay.
Elsewhere the Asian markets ended the day on a mostly lower note for a fairly quiet day of trading. European markets were moving higher as Germany’s consumer confidence index rose to 9.7, a jump from the previous month’s reading of 9.4.