Wall Street and European markets were caught in a holding pattern today as investors waited for a clear picture to emerge from Greece’s efforts to implement economic reforms and secure another round of bailout funding.
The S&P Retail Index hit another new high for the day, peaking at 565.36 before closing down 0.38 points at 562.39. Retail stocks have been climbing higher with the overall market so far this year, aided by job growth and lower unemployment. The Dow Jones Industrial Average inched up 5.75 points to 12,883.95.
Among the fashion’s standout performers were Ralph Lauren Corp., which rose 9.2 percent to $171.49 after beating third-quarter profit expectations, and The Jones Group Inc., which gained 6.6 percent to $10.17 after posting a narrower loss for its fourth quarter.
Most of Europe’s stock markets closed the day in the red as investors zeroed in on Greece.
The FTSE 100 in London declined 0.2 percent to 5,875.93, the CAC 40 in Paris dipped 0.1 percent to 3,410, while the DAX in Frankfurt dropped 0.1 percent to 6,748.76. Only the FTSE MIB in Milan managed to rise, gaining 1.1 percent to 16,669.22.
The decliners included Ferragamo, down 2.8 percent to 12.80 euros; Yoox, which dropped 1.8 percent to 9.33 euros, and Swatch Group, down 1.3 percent to 69 Swiss francs.
Those holding up better and posting gains were Geox, up 1.3 percent to 2.66 euros; Mulberry, ahead 1 percent to 18.58 pounds, and Carrefour, up 0.4 percent to 18.30 euros.
The euro traded at $1.31, while the pound traded at $1.58 and the Swiss franc traded at $1.08.