Shares of retailers and other consumer-services companies fell as inflation cooled slightly in August but remained strong, with a surge in Covid-19 infections slowing economic growth and pandemic-related shortages of labor and supplies continuing to drive up prices.
The Labor Department said last month's consumer-price index rose a seasonally adjusted 0.3% in August from July, slower than the 0.5% one-month increase in July, and down markedly from June's 0.9% pace. Prices eased for autos, with used vehicle prices dropping sharply, and hotel rates and airline fares declining in August from July.
Meanwhile, American incomes fell last year despite increased government aid tied to the Covid-19 pandemic that prevented millions from falling into poverty, Census Bureau figures show.
In corporate news, Procter & Gamble said it would reach net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions by 2040 across both its own operations and its supply chain, from the production of raw materials to store distribution.
Amazon.com plans to add 125,000 employees throughout its U.S. warehouse operations as the online retail giant prepares for the holiday shopping period, in which a tight labor market is set to make it more challenging to find staff. The company also said it plans to open 100 facilities across the country in September, deepening its pool of locations used to store, sort and ship its packages.
Casino stocks fell after the Macau government indicated it would seek to tighten regulation of gaming in the territory, a major Asian gambling destination. Wynn Resorts and Las Vegas Sands both tumbled more than 10%.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires