A better-than-expected performance by durable goods orders sent the stock market higher Wednesday, lifting the Standard & Poor’s Retail Index at a slower pace than the broader indices. The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 0.8 percent to 11,502.51 and the S&P 500 ascended at the same rate to 1,281.66. Concerns about the track of tropical storm Gustav sent the price of crude oil higher, but that didn’t stop the
S&P Retail Index from moving ahead 0.4 percent to 392.11. Talbots topped all gainers with a 28.2 percent advance after the company reduced its projected loss for the year based on both the reaction to its new assortments and lower-than-expected costs for closing its men’s, kids’ and U.K. operations. Chico’s FAS was rewarded with a 9.8 percent pickup after its second-quarter results came in better than expected late Tuesday. Vendors weren’t rewarded quite as handsomely as many of their retail accounts, but Quiksilver enjoyed an 11.3 percent bump after it said it had found a buyer for its Rossignol ski unit, which had dragged down company results since its acquisition three years ago. G-III Apparel Group picked up 5 percent on the day, as it continued to gain from its acquisition of the Wilsons stores and the expansion of its Calvin Klein license to include better women’s sportswear.
* Editor’s note: European stocks are quoted in the currency of their principal exchanges. Shares on the London Stock Exchange are quoted in pence, Richemont and The Swatch Group are quoted in Swiss francs and Hennes & Mauritz is quoted in Swedish kronor. All other European stocks are in euros.