U.S. stocks are modestly higher ahead of the three-day weekend. The stock market will be closed on Monday and normally traders make their moves early and then head to the Hamptons.
Unfortunately, Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen is speaking today at 1:15 p.m. and it looks like market players are sticking around to make changes to their portfolios if needed. She will be speaking at an event in Massachusetts, and it’s expected she will give some hints about raising interest rates.
The S&P 500 is rising by 2 points to 2,093, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up by 19 points to 17,847 and the Nasdaq is higher by 7 points to 4,909. The S&P Retail ETF is gaining 23 cents to sell at $42.04. Oil has slipped below $49 a barrel.
Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance, Inc. stock is up over 10 percent in early trading to $236 after the retailer reported a 24 percent increase in net sales. Net income for the quarter also jumped 37.04 percent. Comparable-store sales grew 15.2 percent and were driven by an 11 percent increase in traffic. Salon services also added to the very good quarter as that number grew by 14.2 percent. Ulta raised its guidance for the year, joining a retail club that has few members.
Deckers Outdoor Corp. shares are rising by over 4 percent to $51.40 even though the maker of Uggs reported a fiscal fourth quarter loss of $23.7 million and gave downbeat guidance. Overall, the quarter was pretty good with revenue rising 11 percent to $378.6 million — a company record. The adjusted net income was a positive $3.6 million and earnings per share of 11 cents beat analyst estimates for 6 cents. Deckers said chief executive officer Angel Martinez will be stepping down, but will remain as board chairman. The company also said that fiscal 2017 net sales will be flat to down 3 percent, but investors preferred to focus on the positive sales.
In economic news, the Commerce Department said the economy expanded at a rate of 0.8 percent for the first quarter. That was higher than the initial forecast of 0.5 percent. Residential spending increased at a rate of 17.1 percent. There was no revision to consumer spending.