U.S. stocks started lower Friday, with consumer discretionary companies down the most, after an unexpectedly weak retail sales report. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 79 points to 10,093. The S&P 500 Index dropped 9 points to 1,077. The Nasdaq Composite declined 17 points to 2,200. The retail sector is leading the markets lower. Walgreen is down 2% on a downgrade. Amazon is down 2% on a downgrade. Skechers is trading higher on positive analyst comments. In the tech space, NSM is higher following better than expected earnings. Research in Motion opened lower, but rebounded on positive analyst comments and a settlement with Motorola. Motorola is higher as well. Google is lower even though FBR made positive comments. Dell is lower after settling with the SEC regarding how they booked gains with Intel. Corning is acting well, up 4.5%. The financials opened lower except for Goldman which got clobbered yesterday. Goldman also made positive comments on the big banks regarding unrealized gains sitting on their books. Banco Santander is jumping 5% on earnings guidance. After the first half an hour the averages started to battle back. Bristol Myers is jumping 4% on an upgrade. In the commodity space, BP continues to rebound. Suncor Energy is higher on an upgrade. Transocean is up 2% even though Citigroup removed it from their conviction buy list. US Steel is up 2% on an upgrade.
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