The news whacked Wall Street and set off a slide of 1.4%. WalMart, the biggest retailer, reported slow growth and earnings below expectations for the second quarter. “The retail environment remains challenging in the U.S. and our international markets, as customers are cautious in their spending,” according to Chief Financial Officer Charles Holley. Should we be worried about it?
Probably not. While a turnaround consumer spending would be the quickest and easiest way to goose the economy and put people back to work, it shouldn’t come at the expense of fundamentals such as repairing household finances. A little caution now could make for a stronger economy in the long run – and that picture is continuing to look a bit brighter.