July retail sales slightly lower than expected
FOX Business’ Cheryl Casone reviews the July retail sales report.
U.S. equity markets slipped Friday morning after lawmakers went on break without agreeing on a coronavirus relief package and retail sales softened.
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 87 points, or 0.31%, in the opening minutes of trading while the S&P 500 dropped 0.23% and and the Nasdaq Composite swung between tiny gains and losses.
The Senate adjourned for its August recess on Thursday, joining the House, as Republicans and Democrats remain $1 trillion apart on a coronavirus relief package. The major hurdle in negotiations is about $950 billion of aid that Democrats want to give states and cities.
Retail sales rose 1.2% in July, missing the 1.9% gain that analysts surveyed by Refinitiv were expecting while June’s reading was revised up to 8.4% from 7.5%.
Elsewhere on the economic front, industrial sales rose 3% month-over-month in July, matching estimates.
Looking at stocks, Apple Inc. continues its quest to become the first U.S. company to reach a $2 trillion market capitalization after hitting $1.97 trillion on Thursday. Shares need to top $467.77 to reach the target.
Tesla Inc. was upgraded to “equal weight” at Morgan Stanley, which cited the prospects of its battery business.
Looking at earnings, Chinese search engine Baidu reported a beat on both the top and bottom lines, but shares were under pressure after iQiyi Inc., a Netflix-like streaming service that the company spun off in January 2018, announced it was cooperating with a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission probe of its financial records.
The investigation comes following an April report released by Wolfpack Research that accused the company of overstating revenue by as much as 44%.
Elsewhere, DraftKings Inc.’s quarterly loss widened as COVID-19 put sports on hold, but the sports-betting app said revenue has seen sequential improvement as pro events resume.
Looking at commodities, gold slid $12.60 to $1,957.80 an ounce, while West Texas Intermediate crude oil was unchanged at $42.24 per barrel.
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European markets were trading lower across the board, with France’s CAC down 1.76%, Britain’s FTSE weaker by 1.57% and Germany’s DAX off 0.96%.
In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slipped 0.19% while Japan’s Nikkei added 0.17% and China’s Shanghai Composite tacked on 1.19%.
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