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.

Copyright (C) 2014 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: MW , JOSB , JCP

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