U.S. Retail Stocks Steady Amid Market Sell-Off

Dow falls 243 points as corporate earnings spark economic worries.

U.S. retail stocks held their own in a sharp sell-off on Wall Street.

The S&P 500 Retailing Industry Group slipped just 0.1 percent, or 0.47 points, to 643.41 as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.8 percent, or 243.36 points, to 13,102.53. A series of quarterly updates from the likes of DuPont, 3M and others spooked investors and raised broader economic concerns.

Although the retail sector overall held up relativley well, there were also plenty of companies losing ground.

American Eagle Outfitters Inc.’s stock fell 3.8 percent to $21.22. Robert Hanson, the teen retailer’s chief executive officer, fleshed out his vision for the brand, but did not raise third-quarter profit projections as some anticipated.


Also declining were The Jones Group Inc., down 3.4 percent to $13.07; Fifth & Pacific Cos Inc., 2.5 percent to $10.27; J.C. Penney Co. Inc., 2.4 percent to $25.62; Avon Products Inc., 2.4 percent to $15.96, and VF Corp., 2.4 percent to $155.67.

Coach Inc. bucked the trend, rising 7.4 percent to $58.15 after the company reported stronger-than-expected first-quarter results with U.S. outlets and Chinese operations boosting results.

European markets were also in retreat.

The FTSE 100 in London shrank 1.4 percent to 5,797.91, while the CAC 40 in Paris dropped 2.2 percent to 3,406.50. In Frankfurt, the DAX dipped 2.1 percent to 7,173.69 and the FTSE MIB contracted 1.8 percent to 15,578.95.

Luxury and retail stocks were down across the board, with the day’s biggest decliners including Mulberry, which closed 24.7 percent down to 9.94 pounds after issuing a profit warning Tuesday morning.

Also posting declins were Brunello Cucinelli, down 5 percent to 13.43 euros; Ferragamo, 4.2 percent to 15.28 euros; Compagnie Financière Richemont, 1.9 percent to 58.55 Swiss francs; LVMH Moët Hennessey Louis Vuitton, 2.2 percent to 122.40 euros, and Burberry, down 3.2 percent to 11.34 pounds.

The pound traded at $1.60 versus the dollar, the euro traded at $1.30 and the Swiss franc traded at $1.08.