Sears Holdings Corp.’s exploration of a plan to establish REITs for its retail properties to generate badly needed cash lifted the stock 31 percent and helped propel the WWD Global Stock Tracker forward 0.3 percent to 103.06.
The tracker gained 1.4 percent for the week.
A strong jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics helped the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 score small increases for the day. Both hit all-time highs — 15,575.33 for the Dow and 2,034.26 for the S&P — before descending to points closer to their opening marks, although modestly above them.
U.S. investors started the day with the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ report of a drop in the unemployment rate to 5.8 percent last month from 5.9 percent in September.
“The best news in the report was from the household data that showed a 416,000 gain in the labor force, a 683,000 gain in employment and a 0.1 [point] uptick in the labor force participation rate to 62.8 percent,” said Doug Handler, chief U.S. economist for IHS Global Insight.
While Sears led all tracker stocks as it soared 31 percent to $42.84, Abercrombie & Fitch Co. saw its shares sour after it reported that its third-quarter sales fell 12 percent — and were down 10 percent on a comparable basis — and that its earnings for the period would be more than one third below analysts’ expectations. A&F hit a 52-week low of $29.25 in midday trading before closing at $29.5, down 16.6 percent, the largest tracker decline of the day.
A&F’s softness rubbed off on teen retailing rival American Eagle Outfitters Inc., which saw its shares fall 6.4 percent to $12.94, the third largest decline among tracker stocks. Safilo Group SpA logged the second biggest drop, sliding 8.5 percent to 10.06 euros, or $12.45 at current exchange.
Trinity Ltd. was off 3.4 percent to 1.73 Hong Kong dollars, or 22 cents, and Michael Kors Holdings Ltd. shares dropped 3.3 percent to $69.94.
Ted Baker plc was a distant second to Sears in its gain for the day. Shares rose 6.7 percent to 20.93 pounds, or $33.14, and Puma was up 5.5 percent to 184.75 euros, or $228.63. Elizabeth Arden Inc. rose 5.2 percent to $18.16 and J.C. Penney Co. Inc., Sears’ midtier retailing rival, gained 4.6 percent to $7.82.
Shares of Compagnie Financière Richemont rose 4.5 percent to 84.10 Swiss francs, or $86.40, as investors focused on opportunities for future growth despite a 23.5 percent drop in first-half earnings.