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Home improvement retailer Home Depot said reported a 15 percent fall in second-period profit Tuesday as sales fell short of expectations amid the softer U.S. housing market.
CNBC's Bob Pisani reports on what traders are telling him before the market opens: The European Central Bank for a fourth day needed to add extra cash into the overnight lending market. But the action is working. Overseas markets are largely calm.
One week after Cerberus Capital announced former Home Depot spacerCEO Bob Nardelli will take over Chrysler, the reality of the job he faces in fixing the automaker is clear. It is gonna take a while.
While most long-term investors should stay on the sidelines during the current market turmoil, analysts say there are opportunities to find some bargains amid the carnage."Fear creates opportunity," Michael Embler, chief investment officer at Franklin Templeton Investments, told CNBC.com. "If you are a long-term investor, you should be turning off your screen. But if you want to buy stock, this is an opportunity."
U.S. Stocks ended sharply lower on renewed fears about credit markets and global liquidity. "The message of the markets today is that the credit problem is significantly more than what was being forecast or expected by private sector economists and the Federal Reserve," said Hugh Johnson of Johnson Illington Advisors. "This sharp decline is very scary."
Retailer Home Depot said Thursday that it was in discussions to restructure terms of its previously announced deal to sell its supply unit, and also said it was lowering the price range for a tender offer under which it is buying back stock.
Stocks rallied as investors snapped up shares in the beaten-down financial sector despite uneasiness surrounding the health of credit markets and the U.S. economy. "We got a big sigh-of-relief rally," said Arthur Cashin, director of floor operations at UBS.
"Massive short squeeze run?" JP Morgan's Charles Grom raises the question of whether we'll see a short squeeze run of retail shares when same store sales are released this Thursday much like we saw last month. If you remember, June's same store sales were not strong by any means rather they were more or less on plan for what is traditionally a weak summer sales season (buyers are on the beach not the in the malls.)
U.S. stocks futures are slightly firmer ahead of the opening in a market still cranky about credit worries and pondering the Fed's next move. European stock markets are mixed after trading lower this morning, and Asian stocks were lower overnight.
Cerberus Capital Management named former Home Depot Chief Executive Robert Nardelli as chairman and chief executive of Chrysler in an executive shake-up just after the private equity firm completed a deal to acquire the struggling No. 3 U.S. automaker.
Talk about moving fast. Just two days after taking ownership of Chrysler, Cerberus Capital has put a new man in charge of the struggling automaker. And it's a bold move picking an auto industry outsider. Bob Nardelli steps in as Chrysler's chairman and CEO in a move that many will question. Yet, I think this move could work for a couple reasons.
I think that things are going to get worse before they get better in the retail. I took a look at short interest in a few big retail names today and was surprised to see just how many investors were betting AGAINST the stores that cater to the mass market consumer right now.
The Dow and S&P 500 carved out new record highs after stocks rallied sharply later in the week following strong retail sales data and continued mergers and acquisitions activity. Through Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average posted a weekly gain of 1.8%, the S&P 500 rose 1.1%, while the Nasdaq Composite rose 1.3%.
U.S. retail sales in June posted their biggest drop in nearly two years, according to government data Friday, indicating the housing slump and soaring gasoline costs are depressing consumer spending.
Corporate America is on a share buyback binge, fueling concerns that U.S. companies are masking underlying business problems and trying to pump up their executives' compensation.
It has been a tough few months for short-sellers of retail stocks. Buyout activity has helped buoy up stock prices in the sector until Tuesday when it took a turn, and retail stocks were bathed in red following profit warnings from Sears and Home Depot.
The U.S. stock market headed toward an indifferent opening with futures bouncing above and below fair value after Tuesday's selloff. A new round of subprime debt fears on Wall Street spurred selling in equities markets around the world.
Stocks closed with losses of more than 1% after investors were spooked by earnings warnings from two major retailers amid persistent concerns regarding the housing market and subprime mortgages. "Home Depot's cautious comments set the negative tone," said Dan McMahon, head of listed trading at CIBC World Markets.
Sears Holdings on Tuesday forecast lower quarterly profit and said it needs to better control its costs and stock more items that its shoppers demand, sending shares down more than 8.7%.
It has been a tough time to be short retail stocks, even with same store sales likely to be even weaker than expected. Today though the short call is working and many of those short sellers may be willing to step back from the ledge given word from Home Depot and Sears that their earnings will disappoint. That word is countering the positive force of the rumor mill of retail buyouts that have buoyed stock prices despite slumping sales.