Retail Stocks Retreat 0.3%

Michael Kors shares up 1.4 percent after big top- and bottom-line gains.

Retail shares took a step back after four consecutive sessions of gains.

The S&P 500 Retailing Industry Group ended the day down 0.3 percent at 869.29, matching the percentage drop of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which closed at 16,633.18. The S&P 500 was off 0.1 percent to 1,909.78.

Specialty retailers suffered the largest declines among the U.S.-based fashion, retail and beauty stocks tracked by WWD, with The Wet Seal Inc.’s 12.9 percent drop, to 88 cents, losing the most ground after reporting a wider first-quarter loss and projecting a larger second-quarter loss than the one expected, on average, by analysts.

Elsewhere among specialty stores, Bebe Stores Inc. was down 4.7 percent to $4.08, Abercrombie & Fitch Co. down 3.9 percent to $35.22, Cache Inc. down 3.9 percent to $1.75 and Express Inc. down 3.4 percent to $13.57.

Chico’s FAS Inc. shares pulled back 3.1 percent to $15.13 after reporting lower Q1 profits that fell below estimates.

Among those gaining ground, shares of Michael Kors Holdings Ltd. shares were up 1.4 percent to $97.04 after it reported a 59.2 percent in fourth-quarter profits to go with a 53.6 percent advance in revenues. Vince Holding Corp. shares were up 4.4 percent to $28.21.

Aéropostale Inc. shares sustained their upward trajectory from Tuesday’s session, rising 1.5 percent to $3.98. Shares rose 15 percent on Tuesday after the company said it had closed a $150 million credit facility with Sycamore Partners and added former chief executive officer Julian Geiger and Sycamore’s Stefan Kaluzny to its board.

While fashion and luxury stocks in Europe struggled, most European exchanges finished the day ahead.

The exception was the DAX in Frankfurt, which fell less than 0.1 percent to 9,939.17.

The FTSE MIB in Milan climbed 0.9 percent to 21,586.01, followed by the FTSE 100 in London, up 0.1 percent to 6,851.22, and the CAC 40 in Paris, up less than 0.1 percent to 4,531.63.

Among the biggest declines for the day Gemfields, off 3.5 percent to 41 pence; Aeffe, 2.3 percent to 1.16 euros; Yoox Group, 2.2 percent to 22.61 euros, and French Connection, 2.2 percent to 78 pence.

Stocks bucking the downward trend included Geox, which advanced 1.9 percent to 2.97 euros, and Moncler, up 1.6 percent to 13.35 euros.

The euro traded at $1.36 versus the U.S. dollar, while the pound fetched $1.68, and the Swiss franc equaled $1.12.