Meme shares rise, crude oil falls in mixed US stock trading

The stock market is a meme market again.

On Tuesday, the major averages closed mixed, with the Dow rising 0.7% after Walmart’s (WMT) better-than-fear earnings report, the S&P 500 up 0.2%, and the Nasdaq down about 0.2%.

On the index level, recovery from mid-June lows remains the dominant theme.

Beneath the surface, the resurgence of the meme trade was the biggest story of the day.

When the closing bell rang, shares of Bath & Beyond (BBBY) – which have been halted at least twice due to intraday volatility – closed 29% higher. Bed, Bath & Beyond shares have surged more than 400% last week since late July.

GameStop (GME) shares also rose, up more than 6%. On Tuesday morning, GameStop shares were also halted due to the volatility.

As Steve Sosnick of Interactive Brokers told Yahoo Finance Live on Monday, the revitalization of this meme trade comes as investors look eager to build on the rules of the game in late 2020 and early 2021 as this summer’s rally continues.

“It was a great book for that time period,” Sosnik said. “But the rules of the game seem to be changing.” Although not on Tuesday.

Elsewhere, the big story early Tuesday was Walmart’s (WMT) quarterly earnings report that came out better than fright, kicking off what will be a busy week for the retail sector.

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

Shares of the retail giant rose less than 5% on Tuesday.

These results follow a warning issued in late July from the company that caused Walmart to cut its full-year profit forecast and invoke the negative impact of inflation on its customers. Walmart shares have now recovered all the losses they incurred after this warning.

In this release, Walmart said it expects full-year adjusted operating income to decline 11%-13%. On Tuesday, the company raised those expected losses, saying it now expects full-year profit to fall 9%-11%.

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said Tuesday that the company is “working hard to support it.” [customers] Because they prioritize their spending “in this inflationary environment.” The actions we have taken to improve inventory levels in the United States, along with a heavier mix of grocery sales, are putting pressure on our second-quarter profit margin and our outlook for the year,” McMillon added.

Cars are seen parked at the Walmart Supercenter. (Photo by Paul Weaver/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

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

Home Depot reported that same-store sales in the US rose 5.8% versus expectations for a 4.9% increase. The company also reaffirmed its forecast for the third quarter, saying it expects corporate sales to grow 3%. Home Depot shares rose 4% on Tuesday.

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

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

Energy markets also remained in focus with West Texas Intermediate crude closing at its lowest level since Jan. 25, settling at $86.53 a barrel.

However, Monday saw a series of 61-day national gas price drops, with the national average rising by a penny amid price hikes in the Great Lakes region, According to Patrick de Haan of Gas Buddy.

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