Retail stocks jumped 2.1 percent Tuesday morning — the sector’s most decisive move upward since April — on word that Apple Inc. wiz Ron Johnson would be J.C. Penney Co. Inc.’s next chief executive officer and May sales figures from the government that weren’t as bad a feared.
At noon, the S&P Retail Index was up 10.23 points to 506.63. And the Dow Jones Industrial Average retook the 12,000 mark, rising 1.1 percent, or 133.73 points, to 12,086.70.
Leading the way was Penney’s stock, which shot up 15.4 percent to $34.76. Johnson, who has spent the last 11 years as senior vice president of retail at Apple, will replace Myron E. “Mike” Ullman 3rd as ceo on Nov. 1.
On the broader market, the Commerce Department said May retail sales fell a seasonally adjusted 0.2 percent from April — a retreat that was not quite as bad as the 0.3 percent dip economists projected. Sales at apparel and accessories specialty stores rose 0.2 percent, while department stores logged a 0.7 percent drop.