NEW YORK, NY (KFOR) – Wall Street put a stop as the close which left retailers and technology companies to offset gains elsewhere in the market.
The S&P 500 lost 0.8% on Wednesday. The Nasdaq fell 1.5%, and small-company stocks fell even more. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed slightly lower.
A company known to many Oklahoman’s Target fell sharply after delivering a dismal financial report. The government reported that retail sales rose overall last month, but it’s unclear how much of that strength is due to increased purchases versus higher prices.
As investors continue to review financials from Target and a broader update on the retail sector big tech companies are also finding themselves falling at the behest of production cuts and weak demand. Chipmaker Micron Technology dropped 6.5% after announcing some production cuts because of weak demand. Nvidia fell 3.3%.
Crude oil prices ended lower as well. The conflict hanging over the energy market is the worsening war in Ukraine that could cause spikes in prices for oil, gas and other commodities that the region produces. U.S. crude oil prices initially rose, before settling 1.5% lower.
Smaller company stocks also lost ground, pulling the Russell 2000 index 1.8% lower.
Wall Street has been closely watching the latest economic updates, including reports that consumer and wholesale prices continue to cool. Much of the market’s prior rally was due to hopes inflation is easing, which could portend less aggressive hikes for interest rates from the Federal Reserve.
“The better-than-expected retail sales results don’t bolster the case that the Fed” can ease up on its campaign to slow the economy with high interest rates, said Tom Hainlin, national investment strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management
The latest government report on retail sales for October shows that consumer spending remains strong, though it’s unclear whether that’s because of more purchases or higher prices.
Yuri Kageyama and Matt Ott contributed to this report.