Wall Street investors eye consumer results

New York

US stock investors may look to a host of results from consumer-facing companies including Wal-Mart Stores Inc this week for signs on whether the recent market rally has more room to run. The consumer names are among the last major companies of the S&P 500 earnings season to report, but the results will also be watched for a read on spending as well as for commentary from executives on President Donald Trump’s proposal to tax imports.
Retail executives, some of whom met with Trump last week, have argued such a tax will raise consumer prices and hurt their businesses. Besides Wal-Mart, Macy’s and Home Depot Inc are among the heavyweights due to report this week.
Investors also will keep a close eye on housing-related data to gauge if a recent rise in consumer spending and inflation data is translating into higher home prices and a pickup in home sales, market strategists said. Wall Street ended the week on a high note, with all three major indexes registering record highs and the Dow reaching a seventh straight record close.
Investors were watching consumer names last week as Trump met with chief executives of Target Corp, Best Buy Co Inc and six other major retailers. This week, investors may be looking for more clues about the impact of Trump’s proposals on retailers, with particular focus on Wal-Mart, JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade in Chicago said.—Agencies

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