S&P 500 Closes Slightly Higher as Consumer, Energy Stocks Advance

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By Yasin Ebrahim

Investing.com – The S&P 500 closed modestly higher Wednesday as sectors of the market including consumer and energy stocks continued to benefit from the economic reopening.

The rose 0.19%, the was up 0.03%, or 10 points, and the gained 0.59%.

Retail stocks started the day on a strong footing, up nearly 3% as investors digested another wave of mostly positive retail earnings.

Dick’s Sporting Goods (NYSE:) raised its full-year guidance after reporting profit of $3.12 a share that markedly beat analysts’ expectations, sending its shares more than 17% higher.

Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:) beat Wall Street estimates on both the top and bottom lines thanks to a boost from margins and digital sales. Its shares were up 8%.

Nordstrom (NYSE:), meanwhile, slumped 6% as the department store operator reported quarterly losses that were worse than feared as margins suffered from price cuts to sell excess holiday season inventory.

Travel and leisure stocks added to recent gains as investors continued to bet on cruise companies and airlines amid the faster pace of reopening.

United Airlines (NASDAQ:), American Airlines (NASDAQ:), Carnival (NYSE:), and Norwegian Cruise Line (NYSE:) ended the day higher.

The backdrop for the reopening trade has been boosted by ongoing optimism over the recovery as pent-up consumer spending is expected to boost growth.

“The bottom line is that we now project more robust economic growth this year than we previously expected. We look for the economy to grow 7% this year,” Wells Fargo (NYSE:) said.

Energy, meanwhile, cut its losses from a day earlier after oil prices rebounded following a bigger decline than expected in weekly U.S. inventory that stoked optimism that the summer driving season, which officially gets underway Monday, will underpin demand.

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inventories fell 1.662 million barrels last week, compared with analysts’ expectations for a draw of 1.05 million barrels.

Tech was broadly unchanged on the day as big tech traded mixed and the rally in chips stocks cooled.

Apple (NASDAQ:), Amazon.com (NASDAQ:), Microsoft (NASDAQ:), and Facebook (NASDAQ:) ended the day near the flatline, while Google-parent Alphabet (NASDAQ:) closed nearly 1% higher.

Amazon wrapped a deal to buy MGM Studio for $8.45 billion to bolster its Prime video streaming service.

In other news, Reddit-favorite GameStop (NYSE:) jumped nearly 16% as the company looks to cash in on the non-fungible token craze that has captivated investor attention.

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