NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Nov 15, 2012) - U.S. stock markets have slumped to 3-month slows after President Obama's re-election as investor focus has switched to the upcoming "fiscal cliff." Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 Index have slumped over 2.5 percent in the past week. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Retail Sector and provides equity research on The Home Depot, Inc. (NYSE: HD) and Lowe's Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW).
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The "fiscal cliff" is a combination of government spending cuts and tax increases set to take effect at the beginning of 2013 unless lawmakers reach a compromise on a new budget deal. The Treasury Department has recently reported that the October deficit, which is the first month of the new fiscal year, grew 22 percent to $120 billion.
"The stock market is going to be captive to Washington for the time being," said Michael Mullaney, chief investment officer at Fiduciary Trust, in an interview. "The market would like to go up a little bit from here after it has been beaten down, but it's going to be hard pressed to sustain a rallying state until we have resolution on the fiscal cliff."
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Shares of Home Depot surged earlier this week after reporting quarterly earnings and sales that topped analysts' estimates. The company has cited the improving U.S. housing market as a major factor for their strong earnings. "Sales were considerably higher than we had anticipated," said chief financial officer Carol Tome in an interview. "The whole store performed better than expected."
Lowe's has more than 1,745 home improvement stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico. For fiscal year 2011 the company reported sales of over $50 billion. Lowe's is scheduled to release their third quarter financials on November 19, 2012. Shares of the company have gained over 25 percent year-to-date.
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