U.S. equities traded slightly higher on Thursday as retailers rose, led by Target.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 30 points, with Wal-Mart, Goldman Sachs and Apple contributing the most gains. The S&P 500 gained 0.2 percent, with Target among the best performers.
Shares of Target climbed 5.1 percent after the company said it expects “modest increase” in second-quarter comparable-store sales, a metric closely watched by Wall Street for retail stocks. Target added it expects second-quarter earnings to come in above the high end of the forecast. The stock had traded more than 6 percent higher in the premarket.
“Target’s news is a much-needed breath of fresh air for retailers,” said Adam Sarhan, CEO of 50 Park Investments.
The SPDR S&P Retail exchange-traded fund (XRT) gained 2.5 percent and was on track for its best day since June 26. Shares of Wal-Mart, Kohl’s, Costco and Macy’s rose as well.
Brick-and-mortar retailers have been hit hard this year. In 2017, the XRT has fallen more than 11 percent. Macy’s, meanwhile, has shed approximately…