Investors lifted

Federated Department Stores

(FD)

higher Monday after the company said

same-store sales for December wouldn't be as bad as originally feared.

The owner of Macy's, Bloomingdale's and several other department store chains said sales were strong in the fourth week of December, which ran from Dec. 23 through Dec. 29. The company now expects

comparable-store sales to decline 9% to 9.5% for the month, compared with an original forecast of an 11% to 14% drop. Federated's five-week fiscal month of December runs from Dec. 2 through Jan. 5.

In November, the last full month for which Federated has released sales figures, same-store sales rose 0.9%.

Shares of Federated were up $1.04, or 2.6%, to $41.55 in recent action on the

New York Stock Exchange. Federated has a 52-week range of $26.05 to $49.90.

Other department store operators were mixed.

J.C. Penney

(JCP) - Get Report

,

Kmart

(KM)

and

May Department Stores

(MAY)

were climbing, but

Saks

(SKS)

,

Sears

(S) - Get Report

and

Wal-Mart

(WMT) - Get Report

were lower.

The S&P Retail Index was lower by 0.2%, and the Dow Jones U.S. Retail Index was slipping 0.1% Monday afternoon.