The markets nudged higher today despite poor holiday retail results and continued housing problems. Target predicted a possible 1% sales drop in December, stoking investor fears about sluggish retail numbers, MarketWatch reports. The Dow closed up 2.36 at 13,551.69, the Nasdaq up 10.91 at 2,724.41, and the S&P 500 up 1.21 at 1,497.66.
Even with US home prices recording their biggest drop in 6 years, the markets rebounded as analysts reappraised the retail report’s effect: one called the initial reaction “overblown,” saying an “incremental sales decrease” was unlikely to send stocks into freefall. But one analyst told Bloomberg, "We're definitely heading into a consumer-led recession."