RETAIL DROPS IN MARKET DIVE

NEW YORK — The apparent breakdown of budget negotiations in Washington cut off a rally Wednesday and plunged the stock market into a deep late-session drop.
The Dow Jones Industrials dropped 50.57 points to 5,059.32 with most of the decline coming in the last 15 minutes of trading.
Retail issues were among those driven down. The Gap lost 1 1/8 to 43 1/4, J.C. Penney also lost 1 1/8, closing at 45. The Limited eased 1/4 to 16 7/8 while Sears, Roebuck gave up 3/4 to 39. Wal-Mart also dropped 3/4 closing at 22 1/2. Kmart, which continued to see heavy turnover, was unchanged at 6, with volume reaching 6.7 million. (See separate story on Kmart, this page.)
Prices in the apparel sector, however, held up. Tommy Hilfiger added 2 to 42 1/2; Nautica gained 1 3/8 to 42 5/8; St. John Knits was ahead 3/4 to 53 7/8, and Phillips Van-Heusen rose 1/2 to 10.
The hot new issues, Estee Lauder Cos. and Gucci Group, were up, Lauder 3/4 to 34 1/2, and Gucci, 3/8 to 34 5/8. — Fairchild News Service

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