Stock Market Coverage – Tuesday August 16 Yahoo Finance

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Stocks opened Tuesday’s trading session mixed, but little-changed, as investors look to continue momentum that saw all three major averages rise on Monday.

Shortly after the opening bell, the S&P 500 was off 0.1%, the Dow was up 0.1%, and the Nasdaq was down 0.2%.

The biggest story early Tuesday were quarterly earnings out of Walmart (WMT), which kicked off a big week for the retail sector with better-than-expected numbers.

Walmart reported quarterly earnings and revenue that beat expectations, with adjusted earnings per share coming in at $1.77 on revenue of $152.9 billion. The company’s U.S. same-store sales rose 6.5% during the quarter.

Shares of Walmart were up as much as 5% in early trading.

These results follow a late-July warning from the company that saw Walmart lower its full-year profit forecast and call out the negative impacting inflation was having on its customers.

In that release, Walmart said it expected full-year adjusted operating income to fall by 11%-13%. On Tuesday, the company raised these expected losses, saying it now sees full-year profits falling 9%-11%.

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said Tuesday the company is “working hard to support [customers] as they prioritize their spending” in this inflationary environment. “The actions we’ve taken to improve inventory levels in the U.S., along with a heavier mix of sales of grocery put pressure on profit margin for Q2 and our outlook for the year,” McMillon added.

Elsewhere in markets on Tuesday, Home Depot reported second quarter results that beat expectations across the board.

Home Depot reported same-store sales in the U.S. that rose 5.8% against expectations for a 4.9% increase. The company also reaffirmed its outlook for the third quarter, saying it expects to see comp sales grow 3%.

Shares were flat in early trading.

On the economic side, data from the housing market out Tuesday morning showed another slowdown in the sector, with housing starts in July falling more than expected. Housing starts fell by 9.2% in July, more than the 2.1% that was forecast by economists.

The number of building permits issued last month fell 1.3% from the prior month.

Energy markets also remained in focus with WTI crude oil trading just below $90 a barrel early Tuesday. Monday did, however, see a 61-day streak of declining national gas prices snapped, with the national average rising by a penny amid higher prices in the Great Lakes region, according to Gas Buddy’s Patrick De Haan.

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