By Anora Mahmudova, MarketWatch
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stocks ended Tuesday with broad-based losses after disappointing earnings from TJX
Companies, Inc, Staples, Inc. and weak sales numbers from Caterpillar Inc. weighed on investor sentiment.
Selling intensified in the afternoon after comments from Philadelphia Fed President Charles Plosser, who said that Fed
may need to act sooner rather than later should the economy accelerate.
The S&P 500 (SPX) closed 12.25 points, or 0.7%, lower at 1,872.83. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) shed 137.55
points, or 0.8%, to 16,374.31. The Nasdaq Composite (RIXF) ended the day down 28.92 points, or 0.7%, at 4,096.89.
The Russell 2000 index (RUT) closed down 16.53 points, or 1.5% at 1,097.90.
Recap of MarketWatch's live blog of today's stock-market action
Kim Caughey Forrest, senior equity analyst at Fort Pitt Capital, says that today's market sold off on several factors:
"Dismal earnings from retailers signal that consumers do not want to spend and that is worrying for the economy. Weak
sales numbers from Caterpillar rattled investors after it warned about falling demand around the world."
Finally, on Plosser's comments: "Even though it's not news and everyone expects rate hikes sometime in the future,
markets did not like to be reminded of the fact," Forrest said.
Retail sector in focus after Staples, Home Depot results
Retail stocks swooned after a handful of disappointing earnings. The SPDR S&P 500 Retail ETF (XRT) was down 2.5%.
Shares of Staples Inc. (SPLS) lost 13% after the office-supplies seller reported adjusted first-quarter profit of 18
cents a share came in below expectations of 21 cents a share.
The home-improvement chain Home Depot's shares ( HD ) defied the trend, rising 1.9%. The company's quarterly results
missed expectations. But the company raised its full-year outlook.
Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. ( DKS ) shares tumbled 18% as the company cut its 2014 earnings forecast, citing ongoing
weakness in the golf and hunting segments.
Shares of TJX Cos. (TJX), a clothing and home furnishings seller, fell 7.6% after the company's revenue growth outlook
came in below Wall Street's expectations.
Urban Outfitters Inc. (URBN) fell 8.8%, stretching losses from Monday evening after the specialty retailer's quarterly
results missed Wall Street's projections.
General Motors Co. (GM.XX) shares slumped 3.5% after reports that the automaker is recalling another 2.4 million
vehicles for various problems. The latest move brings GM's recalls for this year to 29.
Caterpillar Inc. ( CAT ) shares dropped 3.6%, weighing on the Dow Jones Industrial Average, after reporting a sharp
drop in global retail machinery sales for the three months through April.
Salesforce.com ( CRM ) shares rallied 2.7% in after-hours trading after the business-software maker reported a wider
loss in the first quarter, but adjusted earnings still beat Wall Street expectations.
The heavy run of appearances this week by Federal Reserve officials continuedTuesday.
New York Fed President William Dudley, who gets a vote at every Federal Open Market Committee meeting and is vice
chairman of the interest-rate setting committee, told the New York Association for Business Economics that there will be
"a considerable period of time" between the end of its asset purchases (in the fall, he says) and the first rate hike.
Gold pulls back, Japanese stocks rise
Ahead of trading on Wall Street, Japanese stocks snapped a four-session losing streak. European stocks closed mostly
lower, with Stoxx Europe 600 weighed in part by a decline in Vodafone shares (VOD) after the telecom company posted a
decline in full-year operating profit.
In the resources sector, gold futures (GCM4) settled modestly higher for a second straight session on Tuesday,
sticking to a tight trading range and finding little reason to rally after the World Gold Council reported that first-
quarter gold demand was nearly unchanged from a year ago.
Oil (CLM4) futures settled on a mixed note Tuesday, with traders awaiting weekly supply data that were expected to
show a modest decline in crude inventories. The ICE dollar index (DXY) rose to 80.036 from 79.935 late Monday.
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