After Market: Weak Earnings from Discounters = Good Holiday Deals for You


Some big name retailers posted weak results Thursday, but that could lead to more bargains for consumers when holiday shopping season kicks into high gear.

It was 41 years ago today, in November 1972, that the Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) crossed the 1,000 mark for the first time. It closed Thursday at 15,876, as both the Dow and the S&P 500 moved deeper into record territory. The Dow rose 54, the S&P 500 (^GPSC) gained 8, and the Nasdaq (^IXIC) added 7 points.

Cisco Systems (CSCO) was the biggest loser among the three major averages. It tumbled 11 percent on a disappointing earnings report and weak guidance, which weighed on other tech stocks as well.

Blue shopping carts in a Walmart store parking lot North America
Alamy

Walmart (WMT) and Kohl's (KSS) also turned in disappointing report cards. Walmart cut its outlook, saying its customers continue to struggle economically. Same story for Kohl's –- sales were weak and the holiday season outlook wasn't too good either. Walmart shares edged higher, but Kohl's slid 8 percent.

But here's the good news. Stores such as Walmart, Target (TGT), J.C. Penney (JCP) and others that cater to low and middle income Americans, are likely to cut prices by even more than they had planned, in an effort to salvage the holiday season.

On the upside, healthcare stocks gained after President Obama reversed course and said insurance companies can continue to offer existing policies next year, even if they don't meet the standards of the Obamacare law. UnitedHealth (UNH), Aetna (AET), Wellpoint (WELP), Magellan (MGLN), and Humana (HUM) all gained about 1 percent.

Elsewhere, Amazon (AMZN) rose 3 percent following an upbeat web services conference. CEO Jeff Bezos says new projects will eventually bring in more revenue than its retail business. Over the past year, Amazon shares have gained 65 percent.

On the downside, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) fell 5 percent. The computer maker halted sales of the Chromebook 11 following reports that its charger has been overheating.

SeaWorld (SEAS) shares are underwater, down 6 percent. The theme park operator posted weak revenue.

And Lululemon (LULU) fell 4 percent. The brokerage firm Sterne Agee cut its rating on the stock to "underperform."

- Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.

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18 Comments

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pdbliz

People,you are grown ,,,,,if you do not like Walmart,,,,,,,stay away.!!!!!

Go to the Obama Market and get your goods the first of the month...
Use your EBT CARDS.!!!!!!.....Have more unwed kids andget more money added to your EBT CARD.!!!!!! Adopt your cousin or nephew,,,get more money on your EBT CARD...
Democrates in Congress urge this kind of action....
Does not matter about morals,,,it is about,,,DEMOCRATE VOTES.!!!!!

November 15 2013 at 8:50 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
pdbliz

Everyone calls business that make money,,,GREEDY.!!!!!!! I call it good business..
A business has to make profits to stay in business.......IF NOT,,IT WILL FAIL LIKE OUR GOVERMENT.!!!!!!!
GREED,,,,,IS WHAT OUR GOVERMENT IS ALL ABOUT....
TAKES 5 GOVERMENT EMPLOYES TO ANSWER ONE PHONE......THEN,,,,5 MORE TO HANG THE PHONE UP.
WE THE PEOPLE ARE THE GOVERMENT,,,IT IS TIME WE THE PEOPLE TAKE CHARGE OF OUR GOVERMENT.!!!!!
BADSOMEY GIVE ME NEGITIVE,,,I DO NOT CARE.!!!

November 15 2013 at 8:46 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
house123456james

I wouldn't shop at ballmart if they were giving there products away.**** ballmart!

November 15 2013 at 4:39 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
desmoi225

I just shopped at Walmart the other day. I like the prices on their paper goods and toiletries but can't say much for their food. Half of it is just garbage. Their vegetables and fruit look like they got them out of a dumpster where a decent grocery store discarded them. Their frozen food had enough frost on it to sink the Titanic 2 and a lot of their boxed goods looked old. I saw brands of things I used to buy a few years ago that have been discontinued. I couldn't check out the pasta isle because they sprayed some kind of bug spray that blew me away. Their meat looked OK but their prices were higher than places like Publix. Anyway, my visit to the grocery part of the store was cut short. Never made it to the stale bread section.

November 15 2013 at 12:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
womlib

I haven't shopped at WalMart or Kohl in at least 3 yrs. So tired of their greed. Perhaps more people like myself are not shopping there, therefore bad numbers. Opening up early on Thanksgiving is another vision of how these stores think. $$$. Well not My $ this year or anytime in the future. " Good Holiday Deals"? Getting rushed upon and buying sub-standard products? I'll leave that to those who can't see beyond the word " Sale".

November 14 2013 at 11:57 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to womlib's comment
seekthetruth123

And should they fail ? Just how many thousands of Americans will be out of a paying job. sadly you look at the small picture due to your complete ignorance of how business works and how the Walton family makes their money.

November 15 2013 at 12:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to seekthetruth123's comment
pdbliz

very good post,,,I am glad you see the truth........
Bussiness have to make profits ....if not,,would fail.....

November 15 2013 at 8:43 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down
willypfistergash

LMAO.....walmart haters.

November 14 2013 at 11:43 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Valerie

Re the article's focus on "good holiday deals".......WHEN are people going to wise up and realize that no yearly shopping binge that empties your wallet is a "good deal" for the consumer.

It's the same scenario every year. People stand in line to rush into a big box store to buy MORE tech and electronics. (All that same stuff that they spent their $$ on during Black Friday last year is now the stuff they don't want, any more.) If that isn't a description of "crazy", it is certainly very close to it.

Then they go home, order a home-delivered extra-large pizza, watch their big screen TV, play with their smart phone and continue wondering "why" they are always broke and constantly living from one paycheck to the next.

Personally, I have grown to really hate the year-end holidays.......with its' relentless focus on spending and shopping till you drop. Want to give something nice to your friends and family?? Give them the gift of your time and attention. A nice home-cooked meal and time spent together will be remembered long after the electronic gadgets have been discarded.

November 14 2013 at 6:53 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Valerie's comment
willypfistergash

val...today's economy is 70% consumer based. When your freinds or family invite you over for dinner and a movie on their new 60" LED with surround sound, we'll count on your passing on it.

November 14 2013 at 11:41 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to willypfistergash's comment
womlib

I hope that when my friends and family invite me over for dinner and a movie it's not so I can compliment their TV. I hope it's more about the company and having fun together.

November 15 2013 at 12:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down
willypfistergash

Take your beta max and a 19" black & white....who cares.

November 15 2013 at 2:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down
cslinz62

I used to purchase Kohls $10.00 coupons on Ebay. If you returned something, they would give you the $10.00 back on a gift card. Now they don't. Their return policy has changed too. You can only use 1 coupon per visit. Used to could use multiple coupons on 1 visit. They lost my business of 10yrs. Too bad. JCPenney got my business back.

November 14 2013 at 6:36 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Dennis

The problem for WalMart, is WalMart. The issue is much less the economy and a strong dislike for WalMart by middle class and lower retail consumers. Increasingly the stores are poorly stocked, often entire rows of shelves are near empty. The stores are often dirty. The management is often, at best, indifferent but leaning toward rude and obnoxious. Dealing with the front line workers in a WM store is a disgrace. Their cashiers, are often rude, uneducated even in store policy, and clueless. Making change is a chore for the cahiers. Customers in WalMart stores are not treated with any level of respect, by WalMart employees.

We could go on to the pricing in WalMart stores. Their grocery section is a joke. Their prices are often higher than our local Kroger stores and even the regional grocery chains in my area. The WalMart store brand are increasingly of inferior quality for the price. The clothes continue to increase in price and drop in quality. The health and beauty aids department is a vast wasteland. Items such a specific razor blades or a specific size of say aspirin are often out of stock, and may or may not be in stock in the near future.

I find that I shop less and less at WalMart. More often than no I can go in with a list of ten items, I need, and they might have four of them. On the items they do have in stock they are often more expensive than Kroger or Target. Why bother shopping at WalMart? In talking with other people I know they are seeing and doing the same thing I am. WalMart is their own worst enemy.

November 14 2013 at 6:22 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Dennis's comment
teeessiii

Totally agree! I just went these looking for sports cards to give as gifts to young relatives. That section of the store was basically gutted, none of the recent releases were there, packs were sloppily thrown around everywhere. Even if I'd found something to buy, cashier lines were few and far between and the few that were open had endless lines. Only 2 of the 4 automatic checkout machines were functioning and there were long lines there too. It takes money to make money and Walmart just isn't spending enough on employees, management, or anything else to get much of a return. Their future looks like the past of Sears, Montgomery Ward, JCPenney, and Kmart. If Walmart executives don't clean up their act soon, Target and Costco will be leaving them in the dust and stockholders will be jumping ship.

November 14 2013 at 6:35 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
willypfistergash

Gosh dennis. You make a pretty good argument for NOT doubling the pay of wally employees.

November 14 2013 at 11:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to willypfistergash's comment
womlib

Yes, everyone should know you get what you pay for. Cheap wages, low production.
I guess the low numbers WalMart is showing is a good example of this.

November 15 2013 at 12:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down
willypfistergash

Obama's economy sucks. This trend isn't specific to wally and kohls.

Hey, did we get what we paid.for when obama bought GM? We're BILLIONS of dollars upside down on stock value....( well, at least taxpayers are)

November 15 2013 at 2:19 AM Report abuse rate up rate down