The Week’s Major Market Winners (NSM)(ANF)(RSH)

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Stocks which rose last week were paced by National Semiconductor (NYSE: NSM) which jumped 68% to $27 after it agreed to be purchased by Texas Instruments (NYSE: TXN). The fate of the transaction between two weak companies depends on whether TI management can bring the magic “synergy” that most M&A transactions rely upon. Based on the TI track record, it is not likely.

Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF) was up 15% to $68.50.  Same-store sales rose rapidly in March and based on the last quarter’s numbers, Abercrombie is likely to have strong Easter and spring sales.

Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ: BBBY) was up 12% as it announced strong March sales. Limited Brands (NYSE: LTD) and Radio Shack each rose (NYSE: RSH) nearly 8% for the same reason.

The retailers with large improvements in share prices are now under pressure to show that their first quarter numbers support same-store sales. This is unlikely as their costs of goods, particularly cotton, were up by double digits.

Douglas A. McIntyre

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