Retail bolsters Wall Street despite inflation worries - RTHK
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Retail bolsters Wall Street despite inflation worries

2021-11-19 HKT 06:28
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  • Macy's flagship store in Manhattan. The retailer was a shining light on Wall Street, soaring more than 20percent on Thursday. File image: Shutterstock
    Macy's flagship store in Manhattan. The retailer was a shining light on Wall Street, soaring more than 20percent on Thursday. File image: Shutterstock
Both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq eked out record closing highs after a topsy-turvy Thursday on Wall Street, as investors focused on upbeat retail and technology earnings which outshone hawkish inflation comments from a Federal Reserve policymaker.

By contrast, the Dow continued to play the laggard, registering its third decline this week, as Cisco Systems weighed on the benchmark.

Inflation remains front and centre for investors, and stock markets initially slipped after New York Federal Reserve Bank President John Williams said inflation is becoming more broad-based and that expectations for future price increases are rising.

Both the S&P and Nasdaq had rebounded by late morning though, with the latter supported by Nvidia. The chipmaker jumped 8.2 percent after beating quarterly estimates and forecasting strong fourth-quarter revenue.

The performance helped the Philadelphia semiconductor index advance 1.8 percent to hit its second record close in three sessions.

Retailer Macy's surged 21.1 percent, its largest one-day percentage gain in decades, after it raised its annual earnings guidance and flagged plans for a potential spinoff of its ecommerce division.

Peer Kohl's Corp advanced 10.6 percent after raising its forecast.

"The consumer is stronger than expected; it's good news for the country as a whole. A stronger consumer is a reflection of a strong economic bounce," said Mike Zigmont, head of research and trading at Harvest Volatility Management in New York.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.17 percent, to 35,871, the S&P 500 gained 0.34 percent, to 4,705 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.45 percent, to 15,994.

The Dow lagged its peers on steep losses in network gear maker Cisco, which tumbled 5.5 percent after it forecast current-quarter revenue below expectations due to supply chain shortages and delays. (Reuters)