A SLIP by Wal-Mart after issuing a weak profit forecast, dragging down other big retailers, and JP Morgan’s disappointing results yesterday led to US stocks falling.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 157.14 points, or 0.92 per cent, to 16,924.75, the S&P 500 lost 9.45 points, or 0.47 per cent, to 1,994.24 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 13.76 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 4,782.85.
Retailing giant Wal-Mart sank 10 per cent to $60.03 in its biggest one-day percentage decline in years and heaviest trading day since January 2009, after it forecast a drop of up to 12 per cent in earnings per share in fiscal 2017.
The day’s decline erased more than $20bn off the retailer's market value, and the stock was among the biggest drag on both the Dow and S&P 500.
Also weighing on retailers, data showed retail sales in the US barely rose in September.
Rival Target was down 3.5 per cent at $76.20, and Sears fell three per cent to $24.41. The S&P 500 retail index dropped 1.2 per cent.
JP Morgan shares fell 2.5 per cent to $59.99 after the bank reported disappointing third-quarter results late on Tuesday.
“In these next three weeks in the earnings season, we’re going to get some clear guidance, not just on earnings for the third quarter but guidance for the fourth quarter and for next year. That’s going to be crucial,” said John Canally, investment strategist and economist for LPL Financial in Boston.
Wells Fargo fell 0.7 per cent to $51.50, while Bank of America rose 0.8 per cent to $15.64 also following their results.