NEW YORK (AP) – Walmart was among the gainers on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday. America’s largest supermarket chain raised its expectations for the full fiscal year after strong quarterly results. Walmart saw sales rise 8 percent last quarter despite weaker sales of apparel and electronics. For the full year, the group now expects sales growth of 3.5 percent. Earnings expectations were also raised. Shares rose about 3 percent.
Cisco Systems, on the other hand, lost nearly 3 percent. The American maker of network equipment saw orders drop 23 percent in the last quarter, but still recorded more revenue and profit than analysts and investors expected. However, the company narrowed its positives throughout the year and lowered its sales forecast.
The general mood on Wall Street was relatively positive after the previous day’s big price gains. This followed hopes that an agreement would soon be reached on raising the US government debt limit. Investors are also digesting new data on the US labor market. Shortly after the start of trading, the Dow Jones index was down 0.2 percent at 33,344 points. The broader S&P 500 fell fractionally to 4,159 points and the technology benchmark Nasdaq gained 0.3 percent to 12,541 points.
Grand Theft Auto
There were more companies that attracted attention. Take-Two Interactive software gained more than 11 percent. The American game company, known for the popular computer game Grand Theft Auto, had better-than-expected sales last quarter. Bath & Body Works, meanwhile, rose nearly 8 percent. The personal care retailer raised its full-year profit forecast. Ford scored a goal. The automaker is recalling 422,000 SUVs in the U.S. because of a faulty rearview camera.
Micron Technologies also rose more than 2 percent. The American chip company, with the support of the Japanese government, will invest billions in the coming years in the development of new chips in Japan. Alibaba also lost nearly 4 percent after the publication of its quarterly figures. The Chinese technology and web store group, which is also listed on Wall Street, posted lower-than-expected sales last quarter.