This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients.
There is still the feeling that the US stock market is in something of a period of respite at the moment, with little in the way of major economic news to get things moving. By early afternoon in New York, the Dow had risen 0.35% or 52 points to 15,063 and the S&P 500 gained 0.64% to 1656.6.
Those index levels have been given a leg-up today from a handful of retailers with upbeat quarterly reports, in contrast to the recent trend that has seen the likes of Wal-Mart, Saks and Nordstrom skidding downward. Best Buy led the charge after announcing fiscal second-quarter earnings of 32 cents per share, sailing passed the consensus estimate of 12 cents. Its share price gained 9.7%.
Urban Outfitters surged a similar percentage after also beating expectations and Home Depot likewise beat Wall Street expectations, benefitting from the resurgent housing market to post earnings of $1.24 per share on revenue of $22.52 billion, compared to earnings of $1.01 per share on revenue of $20.57 billion for the same quarter last year. Analysts had expected earnings of $1.21 per share on sales of $21.79 billion.
The strength of the results from these various retailers raises hopes that consumer spending isn’t as bleak as the picture painted last week when Wal-Mart slashed its full-year forecasts and the latest consumer sentiment reading dropped sharply from the previous month. The focus still remains very much on the Fed at the moment, however, and the minutes from last month’s FOMC meeting, which are released tomorrow, are being waited for by the market with great expectancy.