Shares of Express Inc. rose more than 20 percent in the aftermath of Sycamore Partners’ disclosure Thursday that it had acquired a 9.9 percent stake in the retailer and is interested in buying the company outright.
The stock was up 21.4 percent to $16.45 as trading ended for the week, the greatest advance by far of any of the U.S.-based fashion, retail and beauty stocks monitored by WWD.
The S&P 500 Retailing Industry Group, however, closed out the week with its fifth consecutive decline, pulling back 0.2 percent to 875.21, 2.3 percent below its closing mark last Friday and off 6.9 percent for the year.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 advanced 0.3 percent each, to 16,775.74 and 1,936.16, respectively. Their declines for the week — 0.9 and 0.7 percent — were the sharpest in two months. Still, the Dow is up 1.2 percent for the year and the S&P is ahead 4.8 percent.
Sycamore’s play for Express allowed most teen and youth retailers to register gains for the day and helped those with gains in the WWD sample outnumber those with declines by about a two-to-one margin.
Shares of Aéropostale Inc, were up 2.4 percent to $3.42 while American Eagle Outfitters Inc. moved ahead 2.3 percent to $11.31 and Abercrombie & Fitch Co. advanced 1.6 percent to $41.71.
Outside the teen sphere, Lands’ End Inc. shares continued the upward movement which accompanied the firm’s strong report on first-quarter earnings Thursday, closing at $30.50, ahead 5.9 percent.
Lululemon Athletica Inc., shares of which declined 15.9 percent Thursday following lower first-quarter profits and reduced second-quarter guidance, made back some ground and gained 1 percent to $37.61.
Among those in decline, Inter Parfums Inc. was off 1.5 percent to $27.75 and Destination XL Group Inc. fell the same percentage to $5.08.
Europe’s major indices were largely down at the end of the week’s trading.
The FTSE 100 in London led the decliners, down 1 percent to 6,777.85, followed by the DAX in Frankfurt, which fell 0.3 percent to 9,912.87, while the CAC 40 in Paris was down 0.2 percent to 4,543.28. The FTSE MIB in Milan edged up 0.01 percent to 22,165.97.
All four indices were down for the week — ranging from London’s 1.2 percent dip to Milan’s 0.6 percent contraction. For the year, all have advanced, led by Milan’s 16.9 percent improvement and Paris’s 5.8 percent rise.
Fashion, luxury and retail stocks put on a mostly lackluster performance, registering some significant declines. Bank of England governor Mark Carney’s speech at London’s Mansion House Thursday led to investor caution when he suggested a rise in interest rates “could happen sooner than markets currently expect.” The U.K. Web site This is Money suggested investors were concerned a rise in interest rates could lead the pound higher, creating difficulties for U.K. retailers that operate outside the country.
Among those that fell the most were Asos, down 5.8 percent to 28.99 pounds; French Connection, which lost 4.6 percent to 67 pence; Ted Baker, which fell 2.8 percent to 18.70 pounds, and Next, down 2.7 percent to 62.50 pounds.
The few stocks in the fashion sector that rose included Gemfields, up 1 percent to 51 pence; Prada, up 0.3 percent to 54.65 Hong Kong dollars, and Unilever, which rose 0.3 percent to 32.26 euros.
The pound traded for $1.68 against the U.S. dollar, while the euro changed hands for $1.35 and the Hong Kong dollar for 13 cents.
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)
Breaking News: @hedislimane joins @celine as its new artistic, creative and image director. One of fashion’s preeminent image-makers and trendsetters, Slimane is to join the LVMH brand on Feb. 1 and unveil his first fashion proposition for men and women next September during Paris Fashion Week. It marks a major homecoming for Slimane, who cemented his reputation – and influenced men’s tailoring for more than a decade – as the designer of Dior Homme between 2000 and 2007. He went on to reinvent and ignite the house of Yves Saint Laurent, which he rechristened Saint Laurent, between 2012 and 2016 – all the while maintaining a close relationship with the Arnault family, which controls LVMH and Dior. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
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For Lady Gaga’s only Italian show on her “Joanne World Tour,” the singer wore a range of @versace_official outfits. The standout piece: this custom-made bodysuit inspired by the brand’s spring 2018 collection. #wwdfashion (RG: @ladygaga)
@_camillaruth_ is expanding on the wellness-craze concept with @westbourne – a new NYC restaurant that’s both a healthy-minded café as well as a business that gives back to the community. Marcus works with the Robin Hood foundation to give back to The Door, a non-profit providing youth development services, and also hires employees through The Door. Read our full interview with Marcus on giving back through food on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)