Stock markets posted gains on both sides of the Atlantic today as economic signposts pointed to some strengthening.
The S&P Retail rose just 0.1 percent, or 0.62 points, to 526.21, but the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced a stronger 0.5 percent, or 61.91 points, to 12,169.65.
Retail gainers included Sears Holdings Corp., up 2.1 percent to $45.82; J.C. Penney Co. Inc., 1.7 percent to $35.19, and The TJX Cos. Inc., 1.2 percent to $64.24.
The gains were supported by the fourth-consecutive monthly gain in consumer sentiment from the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers.
The Index of Consumer Sentiment rose to 69.9 for this month, up from 64.1 percent in November. "The December gain primarily reflected more positive expectation for the economy in 2012," according to the joint report. "Importantly, consumers more frequently reported hearing news about employment gains in the December survey. Unfortunately, consumers did not assess their personal finances more positively, with recent income declines being reported twice as frequently as income increases."
On European markets, the FTSE 100 in London closed up 1.3 percent at 5456.97, the CAC 40 in Paris ended the day up 1.4 percent at 3071.80, the DAX in Frankfurt finished up 1.1 percent at 5852.18 while the FTSE MIB in Milan ended up 1.4 percent at 15027.44.
Investors were buoyed by factors including relatively optimistic U.K. data from Britain’s Office of National Statistics. The organization said Thursday that the U.K. economy had grown by 0.6 percent in the three months to September, rather than the 0.5 percent that was originally estimated. Added to that, the Italian senate passed a vote Thursday approving Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti’s austerity measures, which include spending cuts and tax rises.
Most fashion and luxury stocks ended the day up. Among those that rose the most were ASOS, up 4.9 percent at 12.21 pounds, Hugo Boss, which closed up 3.2 percent at 55.45 euros, Carrefour, which finished up 2.5 percent at 16.99 euros and Safilo Group, up 3.6 percent at 4.97 euros. The few that fell included French Connection, down 4.4 percent at 44 pence and Yoox, down 4.4 percent at 8.38 euros.
The euro traded at $1.30 Thursday against the dollar, while the pound traded at $1.56.
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over the top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty