Stocks shake off early loss and rise on Wall Street

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks shook off early weakness and turned tentatively higher on Wednesday, driven by gains at store operators and other retailers.

Retailers had been battered in recent days over fears that soaring inflation would eat away at their profits. Some of those concerns eased after upscale department store operator Nordtrom reported increased sales and raised its profit forecast.

The S&P 500 was up 0.8% at 10:30 a.m. EST. A slight rise in the volatile tech sector helped push the Nasdaq up 1.2%, erasing its loss for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 24 points, or 0.1%, to 31,953.


The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which helps set mortgage rates, held steady at 2.76%.

The market as a whole remains volatile, with investors nervous about rising inflation and its impact on businesses and consumers. Investors are also concerned about the Federal Reserve’s aggressive plan to raise interest rates to fight inflation and hope the Fed won’t act so aggressively to slow the economy to the point of causing a recession.

The Fed releases the minutes of its latest policy meeting on Wednesday, potentially offering more insight into the reasons for its actions this year.

The S&P 500 gained ground on Monday but slipped again on Tuesday as inflation warnings from major retailers piled up. This has been a major concern throughout the past corporate earnings season and has kept major indexes in a doldrums. The S&P 500 is coming off a seven-week losing streak.

European markets were up and Asian markets closed mostly higher.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February added even more pressure to already rising energy costs, worsening inflation for both businesses and consumers. Supply chains have tightened further over the past month as China locked down several major cities to combat rising COVID-19 cases.

Also on Wednesday, business leaders, government officials and other figures gathered at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, had an increasingly bleak view of the months ahead.

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