Wall Street returned to the trading arena yesterday following the long holiday weekend and started the new week off on a soft note as concerns about Great Britain's pending exit from the European Union, uncertainties ahead of the inauguration of Donald J. Trump as our next President, and weak stock markets overseas combined to send equities down early in the day. On point, as the trading day commenced, the sellers dragged the Dow Jones Industrial Average to a loss of some 80 points in the first few minutes of the session. The losses in the NASDAQ were even more pronounced, with that composite heading lower to the tune of about 40 points early in the day.
Shares of UnitedHealth Group pulled back even after the company reported healthy top- and bottom-line growth for the December quarter.
Business prospects for The Kroger Company (KR) are mixed. The company, along with the grocery store segment as a whole, has been dealing with some headwinds in recent quarters. These include a deflation in food prices, particularly for staples like eggs, milk, and meat, which has pressured same-store sales growth. Competition is also on the rise, as the company has to deal with both traditional competitors from the grocery sector, and non-traditional players that have been increasing their food-related revenues.