Trading volumes are fairly light heading into Thursday’s vote in the U.K. regarding whether the country should remain in the European Union or leave, commonly referred to as the Brexit.
Both the Asian markets and the European markets are quiet as investors wait to see the outcome of the vote.
The S&P 500 is up 4 points to 2,093, the Dow Jones Industrial average is adding another 35 points to 17,864 and the Nasdaq is rising 5 points to 4,849. The S&P Retail ETF is up by 15 cents to $41.76.
Hennes & Mauritz AB reported a sharp decline in income for its first half ended May 31 blaming the strong dollar and cold, wet weather. You may recall images of flooded Paris streets and bucolic German towns with homes floating down the roads. Net profits for the Swedish fast-fashion retailer declined 21.5 percent to 7.9 billion Swedish kronor, or $945.5 million, for the six months ended May 31. Pre-tax profit after financial items dropped 22 percent to 10.33 billion Swedish kronor, or $1.24 billion, the retailer said. It was the weakest sales growth in three years for H&M and some investors pointed out the competitor Inditex, who owns Zara had no such problems.
It looks like Golden Gate Capital gets to keep bankrupt retailer Pacific Sunwear of California. PacSun filed for bankruptcy in April and at that time, entered into a restructuring plan with Golden Gate Capital to convert 65 percent of the debt into the reorganized company. But other companies could still bid on PacSun and perhaps offer a better deal. That didn’t happen. The troubled teen retailer was set to begin its bankruptcy auction today, but since no other bidders stepped forward, the auction was canceled. Golden Gate gets to keep the prize.
Facebook Inc. has signed contracts with nearly 140 media companies and celebrities to provide live videos for its live-streaming service. Facebook is spending roughly $50 million for companies like BuzzFeed , CNN and The New York Times. Celebrities like chef Gordon Ramsay, comedian Kevin Hart and Deepak Chopra have also signed on. Facebook found that the average user watches live video three times longer than other types of video.