Consumer Stocks Mixed Today; J.C. Penny Extends Advance After Upgrade, Jos. A. Bank Sold

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Consumer stocks were narrowly mixed with shares of consumer staples companies in the S&P 500 rising about 0.1%. Shares of consumer discretionary firms in the S&P 500 were down about 0.1%.

In company news, Men's Wearhouse ( MW ) said Tuesday it will buy its smaller rival Jos. A. Bank ( JOSB ) for $65 a share in cash, or $1.8 billion in total, sending JOSB shares up about 4% to all-time highs.

The accepted offer is above the previous bid, of $63.50 a share, which Jos. A. Bank had rejected in late February. Jos. A. Bank, meanwhile, said it will terminate its deal to buy Eddie Bauer.

J.C. Penney Co. ( JCP ) shares rallied Tuesday, advancing over 8% after analysts at Citigroup today recommended buying the retailer's stock, citing its budding turnaround.

The department-store retailer last week reported a 2% rise in Q4 sales at stores open at least 12 months or more, which "bodes well" for future sales growth, according to Citigroup analyst Oliver Chen in a new research note today explaining his upgrade for the stock to Buy from Neutral.

JCP "is early in this go-forward phase but we like the risk/reward given our conviction that just making basic changes will support guidance for growth in 2014," Chen wrote.

JCP shares were up 8.6% at $9.21 each in recent trade, climbing to an intra-day high of $9.28 a share and, at least temporarily, erasing the stock's year-to-date drop in its share price. The stock slid to a 52-week low of $4.90 a share on Feb. 4 and again on Feb. 5 despite reporting positive growth of 3.1% in same-store sales during the nine weeks including the Q4 holiday season. Since that time, the stock was risen almost 72% through Monday's close.

In other sector news,

(+) BYD, (+16.8%) Elliott Associates and Elliott International discloses owning 5.38 mln shares of the casino operator, equal to a combined 4.99% stake.

(-) URBN, (-4.4%) Q4 EPS of $0.59 beats by $0.04 per share. Revenue climbs 5.7% to $905.9 mln, in-line with Feb. 10 pre-announcement. The prior consensus was looking for $925.66 mln in quarterly revenue.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: MW , JOSB , JCP

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