NEW YORK — The WWD Composite Stock Index barely gained last week as worries over the impact of higher gas prices at the pump weighed down on the index.

The index rose 0.1 percent to 1,115.44 from 1,113.87 in the prior week while the broader S&P 500 Index was essentially flat at 1,310.61. Valuations were stagnant for the week even as two key reports showed significant improvements in the economy and in the consumer mind-set.

On Friday, the Commerce Department said the gross domestic product moved at a 4.8 percent pace in the first quarter, which compares with a 1.5 percent rate in the fourth quarter of 2005. Inflation was also seen to be advancing at a slower rate.

And on Tuesday, the Conference Board said its Consumer Confidence Index was at the highest level in four years.

Within the apparel sector, the big news last week was that bids were due on Jones Apparel Group while Perry Ellis was said to be mulling over a bid for Eddie Bauer. The players eyeing Jones are believed to be private equity firms.

This story first appeared in the May 1, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Weekly % Changes
(Ending April 28)
Gainers
Decliners
Close Change   Close Change
Harold’s Stores
0.81
15.71
Bebe
17.68
-11.64
Perfumania
21.92
12.99
Columbia Sprtswr
50.89
-11.20
Mothers Work
26.04
12.82
Kenneth Cole
25.51
-7.84
New York & Co.
15.57
9.26
Revlon
3.25
-6.34
Steve Madden
53.24
8.23
Guess
39.63
-6.22