By  on December 9, 2008

Retail shares rallied Monday for the fifth consecutive trading session, gaining 3.1 percent as investors seemed, at least for now, to have priced dire holiday and economic predictions into stocks.

The Standard & Poor’s Retail Index increased 8.59 points to 287.09.

Retail issues modestly lagged the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which increased 3.5 percent, or 298.76 points, to 8,934.18. Investors were buoyed by the prospects of additional fiscal stimulus from Washington and a bailout of the Big Three automakers and briefly pushed the Dow above 9,000, a threshold the index hadn’t passed since Nov. 10.

The top retail gainers included Retail Ventures Inc., ahead 36.4 percent to $1.35; Coldwater Creek Inc., 21 percent to $2.65; The Men’s Wearhouse Inc., 15.4 percent to $14.73; J. Crew Group, 11 percent to $13.81; Dillard’s Inc., 10.1 percent to $4.47; Target Corp., 9.6 percent to $38.32; Pacific Sunwear of California Inc., 9.5 percent to $2.07; Coach Inc., 6.2 percent to $20.90; Abercrombie & Fitch Co., 6.1 percent to $20.44; J.C. Penney Co. Inc., 6 percent to $21.82; Kohl’s Corp., 5.6 percent to $37.62, and The TJX Cos. Inc., 5.3 percent to $21.14.

Among the vendors gaining were Kenneth Cole Productions Inc., 20.2 percent to $10; Fossil Inc., 9.4 percent to $15.46, and True Religion Apparel Inc., 7.8 percent to $14.14.

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