Stock Market News For August 25, 2017

Benchmarks suffered losses on Thursday even as trading volumes remained low ahead of the annual Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium. Market watchers were reluctant to place bets until the outcome of the meeting becomes known. However, small gains were experienced in afternoon trade after House Speaker Paul Ryan announced that members of the GOP are confident that Trump Administration would push through the much awaited tax reforms and also raise the debt ceiling.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 21,783.40, losing 0.1% or 28.69 points. The SP 500 Index (INX) decreased 0.2% or 5.07 points to close at 2,438.97. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite Index (IXIC) closed at 6,271.33, declining 7.08 points or 0.1%. A total of only around 5.27 billion shares were traded on Thursday, lower than the last 20-session average of 6.08 billion shares. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1.02-to-1 ratio.  On the Nasdaq, advancers outnumbered decliners by a 1.47-to-1 ratio.

Investors Watch Jackson Hole Keenly, Trade Volumes Low

Markets suffered broad based losses even as investors were reluctant to place bets ahead of the Jackson Hole Symposium. Such reluctance led to lower trade volumes once again on Thursday.  At the day’s close, 2.76 million shares were traded on NYSE and 1.52 billion shares were traded on Nasdaq. The daily average volume for August for NYSE is 3.16 billion whereas that for Nasdaq is 1.84 billion.

Economists feel that trade volumes will rise only when this landmark meet concludes.  Key speakers like Janet Yellen and Mario Draghi are not scheduled to put in an appearance before Friday. Earlier, economists had commented that there would be no major monetary policy related announcements at the central bankers’ symposium. However, investors would be closely watching Yellen’s comments to gather clues about the timing of another rate hike. and details of the proposed reductions in the central bank’s portfolio.

Trump Tweets Change in Stance

President Trump on Thursday tweeted that he had asked Senator Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan to tie debt ceiling legislation to a Veterans Affair Bill passed on Wednesday, but they had failed to do so. This might indicate a change in the Trump administration’s position on raising the debt ceiling.

Additionally, there were minor gains for the market after House Speaker Paul Ryan said that members of the GOP are confident that Trump Administration would be successful in pushing through much awaited tax reforms and also raise the debt ceiling.

Retail Sector Incurred Sharp Gains

The SPDR SP Retail ETF (XRT) surged 0.9% buoyed by a rise in shares of Abercrombie and Fitch ANF and Williams-Sonoma  WSM . With this, the retail sector rebounded after a lull due to poor earnings in the second quarter.

Distressed Abercrombie Fitch Co. came up with a solid quarterly performance after a long time as it beat top and bottom-line estimates in second-quarter fiscal 2017. Further, the company’s results compared favorably from the prior-year period. Notably, this was the company’s first positive bottom-line surprise in the last six quarters, following in-line results in first-quarter fiscal 2017. Moreover, revenues beat estimates for the second straight quarter. ( Read More )

Economic Data

New home sales for the month of July fell 6.4% to 571,000 whereas the consensus estimated it to decrease to 610,000 from 630,000, the date for June. Crude Inventories fell by 3.3 million barrels from the previous week.

Stocks That Made Headlines

Abercrombie Soars Despite Q2 Loss, Back to Beat Trend

The distressed Abercrombie Fitch Co. (ANF) came up with a solid quarterly performance in a long time as it reported top and bottom-line beat in second-quarter fiscal 2017. ( Read More )

Ulta Beauty Down Despite Solid Q2 Earnings, View: Why?

Ulta Beauty, Inc. ULTA , which has been delivering positive earnings and sales surprises consistently for over three years, kept its robust trend alive in second-quarter fiscal 2017 as well. ( Read More )

Beacon Roofing to Buy Allied Products from CRH for $2.6B

Beacon Roofing Supply Inc.  BECN shares jumped in a day following the announcement that it has struck a deal to acquire CRH plc’s U.S distribution business, Allied Building Products Corp. ( Read More )

GameStop (GME) Earnings Miss Estimates in Q2, Stock Down

GameStop Corp. GME succumbed to negative earnings surprise in second-quarter fiscal 2017 after beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the trailing six quarters. ( Read More )

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