SAN FRANCISCO: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index finished Friday with its seventh consecutive week of gains as a choppy trading day was buffeted by worries of weak retail sales and supported by positive economic data.
The S&P 500 index fell 1.59 points, or 0.1 percent, to close at 1,519.79. The index, however, rose 0.1 percent for the week, notching its first seven-week winning streak since January 2011.
Stocks hit their lows of the day in afternoon trading following a Bloomberg News report that a Wal-Mart Stores Inc. executive called the retailer’s February sales “a total disaster” in an internal email.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 8.37 points, or less than 0.1 percent, to close at 13,981.76. That wasn’t enough to save the Dow for the week; it logged its second week of losses in a row, with a 0.1 percent decline. Among components, Coca-Cola Co. shares ended the day 1.6 percent higher.
Walmart shares closed down 2.2 percent. The nation’s largest retailer is scheduled to report fourth-quarter earnings Feb. 21.
The University of Michigan-Thomson Reuters consumer- sentiment gauge rose to a preliminary February reading of 76.3 — the highest level since November.