by Marc Bastow | December 26, 2012 4:23 pm
It wasn’t quite a Merry Christmas for retailers and investors paid the price as the sector suffered the majority of losses in Wednesday’s trading. Adding to the gloom contained in an east-coast winter storm was a lack of any progress in budget talks, even as President Obama left the warmth of Hawaii to fly back to Washington and try to make a deal.
The net result was a loss on the day despite some good news on the housing front, as the Case-Schiller Index showed another rise in new home prices in October. The Nasdaq took the biggest fall, dropping 0.74% to 2,990.16, while the S&P 500 lost 0.48% to 1,419.83 and the Dow fell 0.19% at 13,114.59.
Retailers winced on news of weakness in sales in the eight weeks leading to Christmas. The sector, once again, was down broadly on the day, led by Michael Kors (NYSE:KORS) which was down nearly 7% by the end of the trading session.
Sector mates Coach (NYSE:COH, -5.9%), Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF, -3.5%), and Ralph Lauren (NYSE:RL, -3.3%) also saw shares sink on the news. E-tailer Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) tumbled as well, falling just under 4%.
Bucking the trend was J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP) which maintained Monday’s momentum from a “buy” recommendation from Oppenheimer (NYSE:OPY). Penney closed on Monday up over 1% and added another 4%% today.
Also basking in some good news was Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM), which saw shares climb over over 11% on no particular news. Herbalife (NYSE:HLF) also rose just over 5% after hiring a strategic advisor and announcing it will hold an analyst and investor meeting next month in response to comments from hedge fund manager Bill Ackman.
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.
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