Here’s Why the Dow Dropped Nearly 800 Points on Friday

Stocks took a major hit on Friday after a highly anticipated inflation report showed a faster-than-expected rise in prices in May.

Consumer prices rose by 8.6% in May compared to a year ago, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ monthly report. This number was up from 8.3% growth in April and from the 8.5% growth in March and represented the largest 12-month increase since the period ending December 1981.

This new data stoked investor worries leading to a big sell off on Friday.

As of this report, the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed nearly 800 points, or 2.5% on Friday. The S&P 500 fell 110 points, or 2.75%, while the Nasdaq Composite sank 420 points, or 3.6%.

Footwear stocks were also impacted across the board as well. As of Friday afternoon, Crocs was down 5.37%, Caleres was down 5.1%, Adidas sank 3.3%, Nike and Steve Madden were both down 3%, Skechers was down 3.3% and Designer Brands Inc. was down 3.38%.

Retailers also felt the heat on Friday. Foot Locker’s stock fell nearly 4% as of Friday afternoon. Academy Sports was down 3.12%, Shoe Carnival dropped 3.1%, Target was down 2.36%, Kohl’s was down 1.7%, and even Amazon saw a decrease of 5.47%.

In response to the today’s inflation report, industry leaders called on the Biden administration to take measures to alleviate inflation by repealing tariffs on goods from China.

“This report showing that rampant inflation continues is one more reason for the administration to move quickly to repeal tariffs,” National Retail Federation president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “While the Federal Reserve continues with its long-term strategy to stem inflation, we need the administration and Congress to move forward on steps to lower prices that can be taken immediately. Repealing tariffs is one of those steps and one of the most effective and meaningful.”

The Federal Reserve is expected to announce a half-percent interest rate hike next week, but it could decide to go higher based on this news.

“We think the U.S. central bank now has good reason to surprise markets by hiking more aggressively than expected in June,” wrote Barclays analysts in a research note on Friday. “We realize it is a close call and that it could play out in either June or July. But we are changing our forecast to call for a 75bp hike on June 15.”

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