By  on April 19, 2006

WASHINGTON — Retail prices on women’s apparel jumped 2.9 percent jump last month, matching the second-largest seasonally adjusted increase on record and potentially pointing to some pricing stability after years of declines.

Still, March prices were down 1 percent compared with a year earlier and marked a 9.2 percent drop over the past five years.

“Women’s had a really significant increase this month,” said Jessica Penvose, an economist at the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The rise matched the September 1989 increase, but was below the March 1990 advance of 3 percent, the highest since 1978, the first year records were kept.

For complete coverage, see tomorrow's WWD.

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