Closing Bell: Stocks Skid on News Walmart Is Cutting Orders

World Leaders Visit The NYSE As Stocks Fluctuate
Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Stocks headed lower Wednesday on reports that Walmart was cutting product orders because of sluggish sales. Walmart shares fell, taking other blue chips down with them.

The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) lost 61 points, or 0.4 percent, to 15,273, the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) slipped 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,692 and the Nasdaq composite index (^IXIC) edged down 4 points, or 0.1 percent, to 3,761.

Bloomberg News reported Walmart (WMT) was looking to order fewer products from its suppliers in the third and fourth quarters of this year. It's the latest sign that sales have been slow at the nation's largest retailer, following the company cutting its full-year sales forecast last month.

A Walmart spokesman called the report "completely false." Shares of Walmart fell $1.09, or 1.4 percent, to $74.66, sending the overall market lower.

In Washington, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) delivered a marathon diatribe of nearly 22 hours against President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, which delayed Senate consideration of a stopgap budget measure needed to fund government agencies until November.

Adding to the drama, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warned Congress that the United States would exhaust its borrowing capacity by Oct. 17.

In economic news, data showed orders for long-lasting manufactured goods barely grew in August, in a possible sign that companies are holding back on investments due to uncertainty over government spending. A separate report showed sales of new single-family homes rose in August but held near their lowest levels this year, as a sharp rise in interest rates weighed on the U.S. economy.

In commodities news, U.S. benchmark crude fell 47 cents to end the day at $102.66 a barrel, it's lowest point since early July, while gold rose $19.90 to $1,336.20.

In corporate news, JPMorgan (JPM) appears to be closer to settling claims involving the sale of mortgage-backed securities that were instrumental in the 2008 financial crisis. Citing an official familiar with ongoing negotiation with federal and state officials, the Associated Press reports that a national settlement for $7 billion in cash and $4 billion in consumer relief is under discussion. The Justice Department is taking the lead, though the settlement would include states with claims against the bank, the unnamed official said. Investors were unfazed by the news, and JPMorgan shares rose 2.7 percent to $51.70.

American Express (AXP) expects to sell half of its business-travel division by creating a joint venture with a group led by Certares International Bank. American Express said it is talking to investors who would inject $700 million to $1 billion into the joint venture, which would keep the American Express Global Business Travel name. Shares of American Express fell along with the rest of the market, losing 0.1 to $75.98.

More Stocks in the News:
  • Facebook (FB) shares rose 2.1 percent to $49.45, brushing against $50 after a slew of brokerage upgrades.
  • Medical device maker Stryker will buy smaller Mako Surgical for about $1.65 billion to gain access to Mako's technology for robot-assisted orthopedic surgery. Mako (MAKO) shares surged 82.2 percent to $29.46 while Stryker (SYK) shares fell 2 percent to $68.80.
  • Carnival (CCL) shares fell 1.9 percent to $32.69 after the company warned it could report an adjusted loss for the current quarter and several brokerage downgraded the stock.
  • J.C. Penney (JCP) shares traded at their lowest level in nearly 13 years, as the department stores operator is facing a rough road ahead to turn around its business. The stock fell 15 percent to $10.12 in trading Wednesday, but dropped as low as $9.93 earlier in the session, a level it last traded at in the fall of 2000.
  • Ascena Retail Group (ASNA) shares jumped 15.8 percent to $20.06. The parent company of Lane Bryant, Dressbarn and Maurices, reported results that were significantly better than financial analysts expected in its most recent quarter.
What to Watch Thursday
  • At 8:30 a.m. Eastern time, the Commerce Department reports second-quarter gross domestic product and the Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims.
  • At 10 a.m., Freddie Mac reports weekly mortgage rates and the National Association of Realtors releases its pending home sales index for August.
  • Athletic wear maker Nike (NKE) reports quarterly corporate earnings.
-Compiled from staff and wire reports.

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We are not stupid, it does not take a genius to know why things are going down hill fast.
1. increased health care cost.
2. increased energy cost.
3. increased cost of EVERYTHING ELSE due to # 2
4. jobs sent overseas.
The transfer of wealth continues.

September 26 2013 at 7:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It is time for prices to drop on every thing. people does not have enough money to keep things going. children goods from clothing to food has risen to fast for many out of work.

September 26 2013 at 5:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Walmart sells cheap electronics to the masses which are then used to make educated buying decision online...the masses abandon Walmart...beautiful...

September 25 2013 at 11:51 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Wal Mart won't have to order as much stuff because they have back rooms full just need to put it on the shelf to sell it duh!

September 25 2013 at 10:29 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Hi Catmom!

I knew that leaving the shelves bare, and the poor customer service would come back to bite them in the a$$. They kept blaming the economy for the poor handling of their stores. The only losers in this will be the full time employees that have hung on through thick and thin while watching their benefits and wages go by the wayside.

September 25 2013 at 10:20 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

God Bless Ted Cruze.............To heck with Harry < ugly> Reid...........and,,,Carzy Nancy.!!!!

September 25 2013 at 9:14 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

I'm Evan / Butch / gopy / somey.
All my posts are really crummy.
I must say Obamacare stinks.
I am just Obama's fink.

September 25 2013 at 9:13 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Yet another new screen name Evan?

September 25 2013 at 8:59 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Hello Butch

Well speaking about Walmart when ever I go there it takes at least ten minutes to find a place to park, the store is full of people and they bare not there to go to the sub-way store inside to eat lunch. Ten richest people in the USA chek out numbers
Bill Gates
Warren Buffett
Larry Ellison

6 Christy Walton & family $35.4 B 58 Jackson, Wyoming Wal-Mart
7 Jim Walton $33.8 B 65 Bentonville, Arkansas Wal-Mart
8 Alice Walton $33.5 B 63 Fort Worth, Texas Wal-Mart
9 S. Robson Walton $33.3 B 69 Bentonville, Arkansas Wal-Mart
10 Michael Bloomberg
$31 B 71 New York, New York Bloomberg LP

September 25 2013 at 7:07 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Hello Butch's comment

Are you too lazy to walk a few extra steps. I like to part far away from the door.

September 25 2013 at 8:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

WTF is your point?

September 25 2013 at 10:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Hello Butch

The market is being manipulated by those in congress and those that give donations to get those in office re-elected to drive prices down. In the meanwhile those of us that have minimal investments get scared and sell thus causing the stock to drop more. Then the same people that drove them or were involved in the scam buy these stocks at the low price, Then congress will extend the threat of a Gov. shut down and the stocks will rebound putting tons of money in those that bought in at the low price, Then the same people will send their gains to overseas banks to avoid paying taxes on the money they made. Just my logical opinion

September 25 2013 at 6:56 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply