Investors’ Confidence Weakens Amid Dip in Retail Sales
The stock market is struggling to recover this morning after falling in early trading following weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales. March retail sales dipped 0.4%, incurring the biggest monthly decline in the past nine months, pulling down the markets as sales fell below the expectations of economists who had predicted a decline of just 0.1%. When factoring out auto sales, retail sales slid 0.4%, compared to forecasts of no change. Another negative economic indicator surfaced this morning when the producer price index (PPI) slipped 0.6% in March, exceeding a predicted fall of 0.4%. When separating out food and energy, PPI met expectations by rising 0.2%.
Dow and S&P 500 Hit All-Time Highs Thursday
The Dow and S&P 500 indexes both hit all-time highs on Thursday and investors showed little sign of losing faith in the markets, despite a recent run of advances. Specifically, the Dow rose 63 points, or 0.4%, to maintain its ascent of four consecutive sessions. The S&P 500 climbed 2.6% for the first four days of the week.