Stocks end mixed as strong data sparks Fed tapering fears

Cisco Systems will introduce new financial metrics

U.S. stock indexes ended mixed Thursday as strong retail sales and jobs data allied fears the Federal Reserve could begin tapering its asset purchases later this year.  

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 63 points, or 0.18%, while the S&P 500 index slid 0.16%. The Nasdaq Composite index, meanwhile, climbed 0.13%. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 35457.31 +198.70 +0.56%
SP500 S&P 500 4519.63 +33.17 +0.74%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 15129.089569 +107.28 +0.71%

Retail sales, a measure of spending at restaurants, stores and online, last month rose 0.7% to $618.7 billion, according to the Commerce Department. Analysts surveyed by Refinitiv had expected a 0.8% decline. The reading was 15.1% above year-ago levels. Shares of major retailers moved higher. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WMT WALMART, INC. 144.69 +3.01 +2.12%
TGT TARGET CORP. 252.19 -1.46 -0.58%
KSS KOHL'S CORP. 47.14 -0.88 -1.83%

Continuing jobless claims for the week ended Sept. 4 tumbled to 2.665 million from an upwardly revised 2.852 million the week prior. The $300 per week in supplemental unemployment benefits expired on Sept. 5. Initial claims, meanwhile, ticked up by 20,000 to 332,000.

In stocks, Cisco Systems Inc. said it would introduce new financial metrics to highlight the company’s shift to software.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
CSCO CISCO SYSTEMS, INC. 55.74 +0.55 +1.00%

Cigarette maker Philip Morris International Inc. won the support of Vectura shareholders, securing its 1.1 billion British pound takeover of the asthma inhaler maker. The deal was opposed by health care professionals. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
PMI n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.

Electronic Arts Inc. pushed back the debut of its highly anticipated Battlefield 2041 one month to Nov. 19. The video game maker also reiterated its net bookings guidance for the current fiscal year. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
EA ELECTRONIC ARTS, INC. 136.75 +2.04 +1.51%

Ryanair Holdings plc raised its five-year passenger forecast and said it would not need to order Boeing 737 Max jets. Talks between the Irish low-cost carrier and Boeing broke down last week due to differences over price.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
RYAAY RYANAIR HOLDINGS PLC 111.82 -2.75 -2.40%

Wynn Resorts Ltd., Las Vegas Sands Corp. and MGM Resorts International were lower for a third day after Macau said it would tighten regulations on the casino industry.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WYNN WYNN RESORTS LTD. 91.62 +0.82 +0.90%
MGM MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL 47.47 -0.77 -1.60%
LVS LAS VEGAS SANDS CORP. 40.30 +0.26 +0.65%

Coty Inc. announced the relaunch of Kylie Cosmetics, the cosmetics company founded by Kylie Jenner. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
COTY COTY, INC. 7.47 -0.24 -3.11%

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil was unchanged at $72.61 a barrel and gold lost $37.80 to $1,754.60 an ounce. 

Overseas markets were mixed.

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European bourses were higher across the board with Britain’s FTSE 100 gaining 0.16%, Germany’s DAX 30 advancing 0.23% and France’s CAC 40 surging 0.59%. 

In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index plunged 1.46% and China’s Shanghai Composite index tumbled 1.34% after Beijing said embattled real estate developer Evergrande will not make any interest payments beginning next week. Elsewhere in the region, Japan’s Nikkei 225 sank 0.62%.