Stocks just miss records as retail sales jump

Walmart, Home Depot report stronger-than-expected quarterly results

U.S. stocks rallied to just shy of record highs Tuesday as traders celebrated a jump in retail sales a day after President Biden signed the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 56 points, or 0.16%, while the S&P 500 index and the Nasdaq Composite index added 0.39% and 0.76%, respectively. The gains propelled all three of the major averages to within a whisker of record highs a day after Biden signed the infrastructure bill into law, delivering funds for upgrades to the nation's roads and bridges, among other things. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 35732.3 +505.27 +1.43%
SP500 S&P 500 4687.79 +96.12 +2.09%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 15697.708306 +472.56 +3.10%

The retail sales report for October showed sales increased 1.7% last month, accelerating from the 0.7% gain in September. Excluding autos, sales also rose 1.7%. 

In stocks, Walmart Inc. brushed aside supply chain worries and reported earnings and revenue that exceeded Wall Street estimates as grocery shoppers flocked to stores for the company’s "Everyday Low Price" amid the current inflationary environment. The retail giant raised its full-year earnings outlook. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WMT WALMART, INC. 138.85 -0.14 -0.10%

Home Depot Inc. beat on both the top and bottom lines as consumers continued to spend more on do-it-yourself home projects. The company said a 12.9% jump in average ticket price helped offset the 5.5% decline in customer transactions. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
HD THE HOME DEPOT, INC. 413.94 -2.04 -0.49%

Lucid Group Inc. reported an increase in orders and raised its production forecast for next year.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
LCID LUCID GROUP, INC. 43.74 -1.12 -2.50%

Elsewhere, crypto-related companies, including Coinbase Global Inc. and MicroStrategy Inc., were under pressure as bitcoin’s price tumbled below $60,000 a token.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
COIN COINBASE GLOBAL, INC. 287.98 +24.74 +9.40%
MSTR MICROSTRATEGY, INC. 638.71 +42.24 +7.08%

Peloton Interactive Inc. announced a proposed $1 billion common stock offering driving shares up 15.5%. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
PTON PELOTON INTERACTIVE, INC. 42.52 +0.03 +0.07%

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell 12 cents to $80.76 a barrel and gold slipped $12.50 to $1,853.60 an ounce. 

Overseas markets were mostly higher. 

In Europe, Germany’s DAX 30 rose 0.61% and France's CAC 40 rallied 0.34% after a report said the eurozone’s economy grew 2.2% last quarter, up from 2.1% the prior quarter. Britain’s FTSE 100 slipped 0.34%. 

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Asian bourses were mixed with China’s Shanghai Composite index slipping 0.33% while Japan’s Nikkei 225 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 0.11% and 1.27%, respectively.