Fashion retailers lead positive trading worldwide

Wednesday, 11 January 2012
Positive trading session worldwide on Tuesday, with retailers pulling the waggon and headed by Lululemon Athletica, M&S, Debenhams, Next, Burberry and Esprit.

The Nikkei closed up 0.4% as it returned from a three-day holiday. Also the Shanghai Composite jumped 2.7% while the Hang Seng gained 0.7%. The Sensex rose 2.2% while in Sydney the S&P/ASX All Ordinaries gained 1.1%.

Trading in Hong Kong, Esprit Holdings picked up 4.6% after the fashion retailer said it was hiring a new chief product and design officer to help rebuild its global brand. The Asian competitor for Inditex’s Zara and H&M has appointed Melody Harris-Jensbach, the former deputy CEO and chief product officer of Puma AG, as its Chief Product and Design Officer in a bid to ensure brand consistency and product efficiency, Esprit revealed on Monday. The company, that lost 73 percent of market value last year, rose the most in three weeks in Hong Kong trading after naming the former Puma AG executive.

Meanwhile, at the close of business in London, the FTSE100 was up 84.44 points at 5,696.7 with the FTSE250 ahead 96.59 points at 10,347.72. Those following the retail sector had their sight on Marks & Spencer, which reported better-than-expected food sales over the Christmas period, helping offset weakness in general merchandising. M&S shares rose 9.2p at 317.7p, while second largest UK department store group Debenhams gained 5.1p at 62p after reporting strong December sales. Also gainers of the day were Next adding 17p at 2,590p and Burberry ahead 1p at 1,279p.

Finally, another jumper to round the trading session on Tuesday.  Lululemon Athletica’s stock jumped 15% Tuesday after the fashion company announced this quarter's sales are turning out to be stronger than expected. According to its statement, the yoga-inspired retailer now expects between US$358 million and US$363 million of revenue for the quarter ending Jan. 29, that is about nearly USD30 million higher than its previous guidance and analyst estimates.

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