Highest US retail sales in 5 months

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Retail sales in the U.S. rose in February by the most in five months, reflecting broad-based gains that indicate the world's largest economy is picking up, highlighted Bloomberg on Tuesday.

Hence, U.S. stocks traded higher as the Dow Jones Industrial Average recently rose 122 points to 13082, the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index gained 13 points to 1384 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 1.1% at 3017. Among the companies whose shares were actively trading was Urban Outfitters Inc. (URBN).

Urban Outfitters's fiscal fourth-quarter earnings plummeted 48% as the apparel retailer's margins were harmed by greater markdowns to clear year-end inventories. Its stock fell 5.6% to $27.86 on Tuesday, becoming the biggest percentage decliner in the S&P 500 index, which was up 0.9% on the session.

Meanwhile, shares of Pacific Sunwear jumped 11% to $2.48 ahead of the results, advanced Market Watch. The stock is down 43% over the past 12 months. Pacific Sunwear’s (PSUN)  per-share loss is projected to narrow to 22 cents from 33 cents from the fourth quarter a year ago, according to analysts surveyed by FactSet Research. Revenue is expected to increase nearly 7% to $245.9 million.

To close the American chapter, analysts predict that Guess will report on Wednesday 14th of March per-share earnings of $1.05 for the quarter and that revenue totaled $778.8 million. In the same quarter of last year, the apparel maker and retailer posted $1.11 per share and $756.9 million in sales.

In London, The FTSE 100 Index moved closer to the 6000 mark thanks to the American impulse o retailers. Fashion retailers edged ahead, with luxury brand Burberry gaining 17p at 1,572p and Next jumping 36p at 2,793p.

European shares peeked to a 33-week high on Tuesday as encouraging German data and US retail boosted appetite for riskier assets such as equities that had potential to advance further this month, explained Reuters.

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