Stocks Stall Amid Retail Woes

Markets recover after bad news from Target, housing sector
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 26, 2007 3:57 PM CST
Steve Quigley of Melrose, Mass. loads some last minute Christmas gifts after shopping at Target in Saugus, Mass., Monday, Dec. 24, 2007. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – 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."