Retail stocks take a hit after disappointing data, as COVID-19 even weighed on online sellers

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Shares of retailers traded broadly lower early Friday, to underperform the broader stock market, after economic data showing that December retail sales fell for a third-straight month, and by much more than expected. The data indicated that sales at even internet retailers and electronic stores, which had been standout performers during the COVID-19 pandemic, dropped last month. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF
XRT,
-2.36%
slid 1.2% in morning trading and the Amplify Online Retail ETF
IBUY,
-2.86%
shed 1.4%, while the S&P 500
SPX,
-0.72%
eased 0.3%. Among the sector’s more-active components, shares Walmart Inc.
WMT,
-1.59%
dropped 1.9%, GameStop Corp.
GME,
-11.05%
fell 3.3% and Macy’s Inc.
M,
-6.13%
lost 1.5%. Elsewhere, Amazon.com Inc.’s stock
AMZN,
-0.74%
inched up less than 0.1% while Best Buy Co. Inc. shares
BBY,
+0.07%
declined 0.4%.

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