All in all, not a bad day for the S&P 500 Index , which rose to an all-time high today. Markets gained ahead of a two-day Federal Reserve meeting that begins tomorrow -- the sentiment seems to be that Chairman Ben Bernanke and the rest of the committee will continue their bond-buying program, injecting more money into the U.S. economy. That's all well and good for the markets, but the growth didn't translate to today's three major S&P laggards.
Just after the craziness of tax season, you might expect H&R Block shares to be doing just fine. Instead, its stock slipped 2.5% after investors showed serious concerns with the number of tax returns the company has prepared this year. Flat year-over-year returns means H&R Block hasn't shown it can take market shares from ambitious and prevalent competition.
Retail companies took a hit today, and shares of Kohl's lost 2% after a streak of cold weather is set to hit business. Most of the cold weather setbacks are happening in the Northeast, and Kohl's has a large portion of its business in the region. With people not venturing outdoors as much when temperatures plummet, shareholders could be in for a nasty surprise come the earnings announcement May 16.
The last of the day's laggards, Abbott Laboratories spinoff AbbVie , lost 1.3% Monday. Shares may have simply sold off after shares bounced on Friday, when quarterly results beat expectations. Though revenue only added a little less than 4%, the sales growth in the company's primary moneymaker, Humira, surged 16%. The CEO was tough on the company's results Friday, criticizing the effect of patent expirations on results. Today, the market realized that those concerns may be a little more material than previously expected.
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