Stocks opened lower after the President’s day holiday but then moved higher as China trade talks and retail earnings provided upside catalyst. At the close the Dow was up 8 points to 25,891. Trading volume was down. Both IBD and BTS indicators are positive.
Walmart reported better than expected earnings as sales were up 2% and net income gained 6% sending shares higher on the day. The company bucked a gloomy retail news cycle wherein the gubment shutdown coupled with Payless Shoe source announcing it was throwing ace duce and shutting down 2,500 stores had caused some to hint of a slowing economy. None of this however appears to be hitting Walmart. The company said same store sales were up 4.2% and online ecommerce efforts continue to grow. Head bean counter CFO Brett “Biggie” Biggs said the US consumer is in good shape and benefitting from low gas prices and rising wages. The retail landscape is changing and Amazon, Walmart and Costco appear to be thriving at the expense of Sears, JC Penny and others.
12 boy scouts met in Ballard yesterday for an eagle scout project where they assembled produce barrel washers for a local outfit that supplies farm produce to food banks. The scouts worked for 6 hours and made 4 washers from scratch. Supplies for the project came from Dunn Lumber and Home Depot. Pizza’s came from Dominos. This coming weekend Troop 100 is headed out for a second attempt at our winter campout and flaming snowballs. Hopefully it will be snowy and miserable.