NEW YORK — After plunging earlier in the week on inflation fears, retail stocks bounced back Friday as a result of two upbeat government reports.

Still, it was not enough of a boost to send the WWD Composite Stock Index up. The index was just about flat, week-over-week, falling slightly to 1,040.41 from 1,040.54 while the S&P 500 declined 0.8 percent to 1,186.57. Dragging down the WWD index was a steep decline on the vendor side of the index, which dropped 23.76 points to a reading of 963.94.

Buoying retail stocks was a report from the Labor Department that core consumer prices rose 0.1 percent, which is not as severe as economists expected. Another report, this one from the Commerce Department, said retail sales in September swelled 1.1 percent, excluding car sales. Economists were looking to see a gain of 0.8 percent. This compares with retail sales in August, which were down 1.9 percent.

This story first appeared in the October 17, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Weekly % Changes
(Ending October 14)
Largest Gainers
Largest Losers
Close Change   Close Change
Harold’s Stores 1.00 37.59 Tarrant 2.19 -25.51
United Retail 8.46 9.73 Mothers Work 7.96 -16.56
J.C. Penney 50.09 9.03 True Religion 13.17 -15.52
Charlotte Russe 17.26 8.62 Retail Ventures 9.20 -10.85
Family Dollar 21.63 4.19 Tommy Hilfiger 16.16 -9.01
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