Following the major indices, retail shares extended their rally to a fourth day Friday, racking up a 14.8 percent gain for the week as the broader stock market rebounded from 11-year lows.
This story first appeared in the March 16, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The S&P Retail Index advanced 1.4 percent, or 3.63 points, on Friday to 262.69 in the week’s final trading session, outpacing the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which rose 0.8 percent, or 53.92 points, to 7,223.98. Despite the recent turnaround, retail shares still have lost 35.3 percent of their value over the last six months as the Dow fell 36.8 percent.
Investors were mollified last week by relatively decent retail sales in February — down a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent from the preceding month — and news that major banks started 2009 with several profitable months. But the global recession, tense economic relations with trading partners such as China and untested stimulus and bailout plans from Washington mean the markets will likely remain in flux for some time.
Among the biggest retail winners in Friday’s trading was American Apparel Inc., which saw its stock shoot up 67.8 percent to $2.50 after private equity firm Lion Capital injected $80 million into the business. Charming Shoppes Inc. also saw gains, up 19.5 percent to 98 cents.