MARKET UP, SOME DESIGNERS FOLLOW

NEW YORK — It was another strong day for the stock market Monday as the Dow Jones Industrials soared 79.56 points and some of the designer stocks went along for the ride.
Polo Ralph Lauren jumped 1 to 27 5/8, taking it cleanly over its offering price of 26, after weeks of lagging behind. The Gucci Group also jumped 1 1/8 to 59 1/8, after recent signs of weakness. Donna Karan International added 3/16, moving the stock to 15 1/16 and capping a nice recovery after the shares had traded as low a 8 7/8 since the company went public in June 1996 at 24. Tommy Hilfiger added 3/4 to 50 3/16, and Nautica moved up 3/8 to 27 3/4.
Some retail issues also moved ahead, led by a 1 1/4 gain to 57 13/16 at Sears, Roebuck. Kmart was up 3/8 to 14 7/8, Wal-Mart added 5/32 to 38 13/32, Proffitt’s rose 15/16 to 61 and TJX was ahead 7/16 to 32 5/16.
There was little response to the upward bias of the market at Calvin Klein jeanswear licensee Designer Holdings, which has reached an agreement in principal to merge with Warnaco for $11 a share in Warnaco stock. Designer Holdings slipped 1/16 to 9 13/16, and Warnaco eased 1/8 to 33 7/16.
The Dow’s increase to finish at 7996.83, its highest close since Aug. 20, was sparked by a 4 5/8 point jump by IBM to 103 7/8. IBM has come up with a process to make computer chips faster and cheaper.

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