NEW YORK — Improved mall traffic late in the month propelled Nordstrom and three specialty retailers to same-store gains as the first December same-store sales results trickled in on Wednesday.

Following Cache and Mothers Work, which early in the day reported that December comparable-store sales rose 11 percent and 3.4 percent, respectively, late in the day Nordstrom reported a 3.4 percent gain in comps for the month, Hot Topic was up 10.6 percent and Aeropostale managed a 0.3 percent pickup. However, beleaguered off-pricer Factory 2-U Stores retreated 3.9 percent and American Eagle Outfitters declined 5.3 percent.

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