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Strong evidence is emerging that consumer spending, a bulwark against recession over the last year even as energy prices surged and the housing market sputtered, has begun to slow sharply at every level of the American economy, from the working class to the wealthy.
The American consumer is cutting back--even at the most important (and typically extravagant) spending times of the year. That's the one clear headline from all the recent retail numbers. Markdowns ate profits, that's also clear. But figuring out just what's going on with the consumer involves a few shades of gray...
Big box retailers like Wal-Mart and Costco saw sales that exceeded expectations, but most niche retailers saw their sales drop or saw sales grow less than expected.
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Shoppers in November turned out in droves for big bargains on Black Friday, helping retailers to post improved sales growth, but by the end of the month, some retailers, especially those at the mall, saw a slowdown in consumer traffic.
Major indices at their highs for the day. Helping today: Initial jobless claims roughly in line with expectations. Bush/Congress tackles mortgage issues. SIVs less a problem?
Are bonds about to lose their flight-to-quality premium? The Fed, the executive branch, the legislative branch, and now even the Bank of England (which cut its key rate a quarter point to 5.5 percent) are working to resolve credit problems. The 10-year is looking toppy here.
Retailers want to rack up sales now. But consumers are playing the waiting game for bigger discounts closer to Christmas
Cramer makes the call on viewers' favorite stocks.Investing can be confusing. Luckily, Cramer has mapped out some road rules for all you Home Gamers trying to navigate the jungle that is Wall Street. Think of it as "Mad Money 101" –- some fundamental advice to keep in mind as you play the market. Whether you're a first time investor or a seasoned financier, it's always good to remember the basics.
Stocks closed higher after another volatile session, helped by a rally among energy shares as oil soared to a record high close of $98 a barrel.
Upscale department store chain Nordstrom reported quarterly earnings that topped a lowered forecast it gave last month, sending its shares up more than 10 percent in extended trade.
At last, some good news after the bell! Hewlett Packard beat estimates and is up 2% (they also announced an $8 buyback), but even more important was Nordstrom. They beat earnings estimates by 7 cents and, more importantly, did not lower fourth quarter guidance AND guided 2008 above expectations.
The turkey’s not even in the oven, but the annual game of chicken has begun. Consumers are waiting to see if retailers grow desperate and cut prices deeper than planned.
Electronics are in, women's clothes are out -- and leather handbags and jewelry are on the fence heading into next week's unofficial start to the 2007 holiday season. U.S. consumers are struggling with soaring fuel and food costs and the falling housing sector.
It's a booyah-free zone. There goes Swifty!Investing can be confusing. Luckily, Cramer has mapped out some road rules for all you Home Gamers trying to navigate the jungle that is Wall Street. Think of it as "Mad Money 101" –- some fundamental advice to keep in mind as you play the market. Whether you're a first time investor or a seasoned financier, it's always good to remember the basics.
The market is finishing at the lows, three of the last four days. A tough situation, since traders now get unnerved in the last hour, even if the trend is neutral going into the close (as it was today), or even if the trend is up (as it was on Friday, and stocks still fell apart in the last hour).
Reversing the trade is the key story today: 1) The "buy tech, sell financials" trade--which has been astonishingly successful since July--is showing signs of unwinding as traders nibble on financials.
Stocks fell for a second straight day, led by declines in the Nasdaq after tech bellwether Cisco Systems signaled the credit crisis was hurting demand from key customers, including banks.
Retailers posted a second-straight month of weak sales, as warmer-than-usual weather cooled demand for fall clothing and surging gasoline prices and a weak housing sector created a more cautious consumer.
October sales figures from Nordstrom (JWN) and Target (TGT) hit the Street, Thursday. Not much is expected but will the retailers at least tell the market that the consumer is ok?