A record-breaking rally in stocks paused today as investors assessed whether stock valuations were overstating the recent improvement in the economy. The Commerce Department said retail sales increased 0.1 percent in April from March. That wasn't enough to lift shares. The Dow fell 26.81 points, or 0.2 percent, to 15,091.68. The S&P 500 index was little changed at 1,633.77.
- Oil fell 87 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $95.17 a barrel. Gold dropped $2.30, or 0.2 percent, to $1,434.30 an ounce. The U.S. dollar was little changed against the Japanese yen at 101.83 and gained against the euro.
- Four of the world's biggest retailers have agreed to sign a pact to improve safety at garment factories in Bangladesh following the building collapse that killed more than 1,100 workers. H&M, C&A, Primark and Inditex say they'll sign a contract that requires that the companies conduct independent safety inspections, make reports on factory conditions public and cover the costs for repairs. It also requires them to stop doing business with any factory that refuses to make necessary safety upgrades.
- A federal judge has approved a $40 million class-action settlement between Skechers USA Inc. and consumers who bought toning shoes after ads made unfounded claims that the footwear would help people lose weight and strengthen muscles. The approval comes a year after the company based in Manhattan Beach, Calif., reached a deal with the Federal Trade Commission over the ads. The agreement covers more than 520,000 claims.
- General Motors says a new supercomputing data center and a fledgling shift to bring software development in-house should help it limit the size of future safety recalls. The Detroit automaker formally opened the giant data storage center in suburban Warren, Mich., today.