NEW YORK (ETF Expert) -- Downward revisions to economic growth have little to do with the weather in the first few months of the year. Yet, economists are already concluding that gross domestic product in the second, third and fourth quarters will be lower than originally anticipated.
Similarly, the National Retail Federation is blaming the so-called "trajectory" of 12 months of sales on the extreme weather patterns in January and February. This is giving the organization cover for less rosy sales results in the remaining 10 months of 2014.
Naturally, consumer discretionary stocks and retailers have not responded well to the news. SPDR Select Consumer Discretionary (XLY) remains one of the more dismal participants in the sector field and the XLY:S&P 500 price ratio only amplifies the weakness of the consumer relative to the broader U.S. stock market.
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