Dow Jones Industrial Average Today Craters from Retail Sell-Off

dow jones todayIt was a Friday to forget. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 185 points today as investors fled from financial stocks and industrial stocks. Concerns about first-quarter retail sales continued to weigh on overall sentiment, and falling oil prices remain in focus over global supply concerns. Shares of Macy's Inc. (NYSE: M) were in focus after the company offered a weak quarterly earnings report and fueled a sell-off in retail stocks.

It wasn't all bad news though, as biotech stocks continued to push higher after a brutal few months. Shares of the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (Nasdaq: IBB) gained roughly 0.5% on the day.

Meanwhile, on the retail front, the nation saw its largest increase in retail sales in a year in April, suggesting that the weak Q1 quarter could have been a temporary lull in consumer spending. The 1.3% gain was the largest monthly pop since April 2015.

Here's what else you need to know about the markets on May 13, 2016.

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First up, check out the results for the Dow Jones, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:

Dow Jones: 17,535.32; -185.18, -1.05%                  

S&P 500: 2,046.61; -17.50; -0.85% 

Nasdaq: 4,717.68; -19.66; -0.41%

Now, here's the top stock market news today...

DJIA Today: Markets Slump as Retail Woes Continue

Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) were off more than 1% again on Thursday, pushing AAPL stock to its lowest level since June 2014. The downturn in Apple stock has been driven by growing concerns about the global technology giant's ability to compete in China, where lower-cost gadgets threaten market share.

Meanwhile, the summer is heating up with a number of different geopolitical threats that could cause some increased volatility in the global financial system. While the Donald Trump versus Hillary Clinton election has gathered all of the headlines, it's clear that the media isn't doing enough to discuss British voters considering leaving the European Union. This afternoon, the International Monetary Fund issued a warning that it sees no upside to the United Kingdom leaving the world's largest economic bloc. Advocates of the so-called "Brexit" have dismissed the global agency's authority and laughed at its inability to foresee the financial crisis or the significant downturn in the euro's value since its inception.

Crude oil prices dipped lower Friday despite concerns about supply problems in Nigeria. A number of attacks on the oil supply chain in the region has raised concerns about the nation's ability to prevent attacks against its infrastructure. WTI prices were off 1%, while Brent crude fell a little more than 0.5%.

But the big news today centered on Bridgewater Associates - the hedge fund run by billionaire Ray Dalio. March 31 regulatory filings indicate that Dalio's firm made some big changes to its portfolio. The firm sold off its entire stake of Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), Coca-Cola Inc. (NYSE: KO), and Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS). The news pushed shares of all three firms down on the day. Meanwhile, the firm added shares of Alphabet Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOGL) and McDonald's Corp. (NYSE: MCD).

Now, let's look at the day's biggest stock movers and the must-own stock for today...

Top Stock Market News Today

  • The brutal week for retail stocks continued as weak quarterly earnings numbers plague the sector. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF (NYSE Arca: XRT) - an ETF designed to track the performance of the broader sector - slipped another 0.5% on the day. Why? Earnings reports: Shares of J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (NYSE: JPM) fell more than 3% after the retail giant fell short of earnings expectations. The decline comes during a week that Nordstrom Inc. (NYSE: JWN) and Kohl's Corp. (NYSE: KSS) issued dismal quarterly reports. On Tuesday, retail stocks had their worst single trading say since 2011.
  • Additionally on the earnings front, shares of NVIDIA (Nasdaq: NVDA) rallied roughly 15% after chipmaker raised its revenue expectations for the current quarter.
  • Finally, here's your stock of the day. Right now, problems are plaguing the Brazilian economy. Its president has been impeached over accusations of improper financial activities, and Harvard University's public health division recommended to global leaders that the nation postpone, cancel, or move the 2016 Summer Olympics over the deadly Zika virus. Its currency has suffered from inflation. Its energy sector has been plagued by falling commodity prices while its agricultural sector has been hammered by structural inefficiencies. With so many problems, there couldn't be a way to make money off it in the future, right? Well, Money Morning Resource Specialist Peter Krauth has an investment opportunity that is going to make many investors happy once Brazil's economy stabilizes...

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About the Author

Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, consultant, and political risk analyst with decades of trading experience and degrees in economics, cybersecurity, and business from Johns Hopkins, Purdue, Indiana University, and Northwestern.

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